By Joseph Serna, Los Angeles Times
A San Francisco social media expert wanted for allegedly keeping explosive materials in his home was reportedly found by police reclining in his car near the Golden Gate Bridge.
A bystander who was at Crissy Field next to the bridge entrance on Monday witnessed San Francisco police, responding to a tip, descend on Ryan Kelly Chamberlain II, 42, who had been wanted since federal agents raided his apartment over the weekend.
“I was sitting in my car and I heard some commotion,” Morgan Manos, who filmed the arrest on his cellphone, told ABC7 News. “I didn’t really know what I was recording at first, but it became quickly evident that it was more than just some traffic stop violation. He was yelling help when he saw me filming him. So he looked basically right at me as I was filming him and yelled ‘help.'”
Over the weekend, authorities announced they had launched a search for Chamberlain after FBI agents allegedly found explosives in his San Francisco apartment.
Chamberlain is well-known in Bay Area media and political circles, and helped Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom in his successful 2003 mayoral campaign, according to a report in the San Francisco Chronicle.
On his website, Chamberlain said he was a social media consultant for the Chronicle and served as a consultant and manager for several Bay Area political campaigns.
Chamberlain touts his digital and social media expertise on his site.
“I was doing it before it was a thing,” he says.
On Monday, a three-page automated message from what is believed to be Chamberlain’s Facebook profile was sent out to his friends in which Chamberlain discussed recent heartbreak, perceived betrayals and overwhelming depression.
Later that day, a new message was posted to Chamberlain’s Twitter account that read, “A panicked update to my letter that should have posted by now. Nothing they’re reporting is true. No ‘stashes.’ Not ‘armed and … ‘”
The message is an apparent reference to FBI claims that Chamberlain was keeping explosive materials and should be considered armed and dangerous.
“It just seems so out of character,” Bob Brigham, Chamberlain’s friend from the Newsom campaign, told the San Francisco Chronicle. “He’s one of the top two or three strategic minds in Bay Area politics.”
Chamberlain’s arrest culminated what had been a frantic search that gained nationwide attention, especially after inaccurate initial reports that agents had found the toxin ricin inside Chamberlain’s apartment.
Photo: Castles, Capes & Clones via Flickr