Calem Nichols


Steve Emerson (birth name)




Restaurant frycook
Former shopping mall janitor


Serial Bomber
Mass Murderer

Modus Operandi

Fertilizer bombs



Portrayed By

Richard Mass

"Confess that the whole thing was a hoax, then!"

Calem Nichols is a serial bomber and mass murderer who appeared in "Paranoia".


Born as Steve Emerson, Nichols was a conspiracy theorist. He was a follower of several anarchist and pro-gun rights discussion forums, as well as the website of a conspiracy theorist named Val Kilmer. The website claimed to expose events like the 9/11 attacks as false flag operations that were committed by the U.S. government to enforce their political agenda. On June 17, 2014, a mentally ill college student named Nathan White committed a mass shooting inside a local shopping mall where he worked at, killing seventeen people and wounding 43 others before committing suicide. Nichols was working at the time and was even a target of gunfire, but he escaped unscathed. After the incident ended, he assumed the shooter was actually a government agent out to assassinate him and cover his death up as a fatality in a mass shooting, while White was the patsy. Fueled on by conflicting initial reports of the massacre and the fact that White was masked, he changed his name, quit his job, and worked in a small restaurant. The following year, he befriended White's older brother Neil, who continued to remain in denial that his brother was capable of mass murder. Misinterpreting Neil as a fellow conspiracy theorist, Nichols decided to take it upon himself to expose the truth and give Neil and his family some closure.

Modus OperandiEdit

Nichols used bombs made from ammonium nitrate-based fertilizer, otherwise known as "fertilizer bombs", all of which were detonated via remote control. During the candlelight vigil bombing, he used a large bomb placed in a stolen SUV, and added several blasting caps, propane tanks, and gasoline drums to provide further fuel to the explosion. His bombs after that one were smaller in size, being placed in large backpacks stuffed to the brim with blasting caps along with nails and bearing balls used as shrapnel.


The unsub was originally profiled as someone intending to "outdo" Nathan White. He is a local male with an intimate knowledge of the White case and the construction of explosives. He may have chosen to commit his attacks on the anniversary of any other infamous mass shooting like the ones at Columbine or Virginia Tech, but instead, he chose the one-year anniversary of the Iowa mall massacre. This, along with his targets of a commemorative candlelight vigil and the actual location of the shooting, suggests a personal connection to the shooting or White himself. As for the city council bombing, it may have been the unsub's way of instilling fear, just like White did, but only on a more widespread scale. This connection may be real or perceived, but it means everything to the unsub, and it is what is driving his actions. He will not stop until he is satisfied with his handiwork. He may have been on online discussion forums revolving around mass murderers and the like, and a majority of his posts would have been about White. His attacks have been organized and sophisticated so far, and the anniversary is not over yet, so chances are there will be another bombing, making his capture all the more a top priority.

In the end, the profile was mostly inaccurate, although some details were correct. Nichols did have a personal connection to the shooting, as a survivor who was nearly shot by White. He also had a personal connection to White himself, being a friend of one of his brother's. These connections were what drove him to commit his bombing spree, though it was not the kind of connections the BAU were expecting.

Known VictimsEdit

  • June 17, 2015:
    • The candlelight vigil bombing: Hundreds of people injured, number of dead unknown. Known casualties are:
      • Mayor Wayne Peloni (slightly injured)
      • Governor Andrew Hobbins (slightly injured)
      • Deputy Mayor Stevenson (first name unrevealed; killed)
      • An unnamed couple (both critically injured)
      • An unnamed woman (injured)
    • The shopping mall bombing:
      • An unnamed man (killed while unknowingly taking the bomb out)
      • Fourteen unnamed people (all injured)
    • The city council bombing: No casualties, everyone was evacuated before the bomb exploded:
      • The nine unnamed city council members
      • Numerous unnamed bystanders
    • The attempted police station bombing:
      • Aaron Hotchner
      • David Rossi
      • Derek Morgan
      • Jennifer Jareau
      • Spencer Reid
      • Gabriel Matthews
      • Lincoln Pike
      • Tyler Pike
      • Lieutenant Garners (first name unrevealed)
      • Numerous unnamed police officers and bystanders
    • Detective O'Nell (first name unrevealed; incidental; was stabbed repeatedly in the torso with a butcher knife)
    • Held the following hostage in a standoff at the restaurant:
      • Brett White (White's brother)
      • Numerous unnamed employees and customers