CALDWELL COUNTY, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — A Lenoir man could spend several years in prison for threatening to kill officers in Buffalo, New York, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Ryan Johnston, 38, of Lenoir, was arrested and charged with making threats in interstate commerce. The charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

According to court documents, on August 18, 2023, a member of the Buffalo Police Department received a call from a person who identified himself as Ryan Johnston, during which “he became noticeably angry.”

The report states that Johnston began to make non-stop calls, over 50, to various members of the department, continuing until approximately 3:00 a.m. that day.

The complaint states that during these calls, Johnston threatened to kill employees, including professional staff and law enforcement officers. Some of the threats were racial in nature, they said.

Documents state that Johnson also said that he would come to Buffalo and shoot officers and he “didn’t give a (expletive).”

On August 26, 2023, Johnston also made similar threatening calls to another district with the Buffalo Police Department, again threatening to come to Buffalo and “(expletive) Officers up.”

Authorities were able to trace the numerous calls back to Johnston.

He made an initial court appearance on Tuesday in the Western District of North Carolina and will be returned to New York at a later date, officials said.

This case was investigated by the FBI and the Buffalo, NY Police Department.