Man sentenced to prison for assaulting a federal employee

Sunbeams light the sky above a snow-covered slope in Lassen Volcanic National Park. NPS photo by M Matiasek.
The man who assaulted an employee in Lassen Volcanic National Park last year will spend 27 months in prison.

NPS photo by M Matiasek.

News Release Date: January 24, 2017

Contact: NPS Investigative Services Branch, (202) 379-4761

The man who assaulted an employee of Lassen Volcanic National Park with an axe last June has been sentenced to 27 months in prison. This brings to a close the investigation into the incident led by an ISB Special Agent.

According to court documents, at about 9pm on June 20, 2016, two park visitors alerted a seasonal park ranger to a man walking along a roadway, shouting and behaving erratically. The ranger observed Nicholas M. Coberley walking down the middle of an unlit road towards a guest lodge, yelling loudly and gesturing with his arms. Concerned that Coberley could be a danger to himself or others, the ranger requested law enforcement response and approached Coberley to delay him from getting to the lodge.

After initially hiding from the ranger, Coberley then ran at the ranger's vehicle and leaped into the truck bed. Court documents detail how Coberley picked up two firefighting tools from the truck bed, climbed atop the cab of the truck, and repeatedly struck the truck's roof and windows. He crawled through the shattered rear window into the passenger compartment, choked the ranger, and swung a Pulaski at the ranger's head. The ranger suffered an injury to his hand during the attack.

Coberley pleaded guilty in October 2016 to assault on a federal employee. He was held without bail until his recent sentencing hearing. Following his prison term, Coberley was ordered to serve three years of supervised release during which time he must abstain from consuming alcohol. 

ISB: the Investigative Services Branch of the National Park Service
Who We Are | What We Do | News | Submit a Tip | Contact Us

Last updated: January 25, 2017