Skip to main content

Waseca teen's interview with police in bomb plot case released

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

When investigators asked John LaDue why he planned to kill his family members and massacre classmates at his Waseca school, the 17-year-old replied: "I think I’m just really mentally ill and no one’s noticed and I’ve been trying to hide it.”

The Star Tribune reports on the contents of the police interview with LaDue, which was released Tuesday along with 1,000 pages of documents related to his juvenile court case. The charges against LaDue include attempted murder, bomb possession, and damage to property.

The newspaper reports LaDue was calm and composed as he described the bomb-making materials he'd accumulated and the plans he'd made. He told police he planned to put a pressure cooker bomb in a recycling bin and blow it up in Waseca's Junior/Senior High School as students passed between classes "just like the Boston bombings," the Star Tribune says.

According to the newspaper he said his plan was rooted in mental illness after clarifying that he had not been bullied and adding "I have good parents. I live in a good town."

The Mankato Free Press reports the court filings reveal that LaDue had joked about school shootings with friends on Facebook and had videotaped himself testing improvements to his homemade explosives.

His YouTube channel contains five such videos. He writes that in one of them he used a 12 oz. CO2 cartridge with a smokeless powder.

A judge ruled last week that LaDue's interview with investigators and documents including a 180-page journal detailing his plot should remain under seal. The Waseca County News says neither LaDue's attorney nor the lead prosecutor were immediately available to comment on the release of the documents and audio tape.

Last week two juveniles and an adult were charged with helping LaDue make explosives and purchase a firearm. But prosecutors say those people were unaware of LaDue's larger plan to kill his mother, father and sister and bomb his school.

In April law enforcement authorities received a tip from a neighbor suspicious about LaDue's use of a storage facility. A subsequent search revealed it contained explosives and bomb-making materials.

On May 2 police outlined their case against LaDue. They said he had studied several bombings and school shootings and particularly admired those responsible for the killings at Columbine High School in Colorado. LaDue allegedly planned to carry out his Waseca bombing on the April 20 anniversary of the Columbine attack.

This embed is invalid

Prosecutors want the 17-year-old LaDue tried as an adult. A hearing on that request is scheduled for July 30.

Next Up

10.6 Tempest Weather Thumbnail

Drought tightens grip as Twin Cities reaches 'extreme' level

By this time last year, drought was fading fast in Minnesota.

Screen Shot 2022-10-06 at 11.23.49 AM

Police looking for woman missing since car crash near lake

The 49-year-old is believed to have been driving when the crash happened.

COVID-19 vaccine testing Mall of America

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for the week ending Tuesday, Oct. 4

The 7-day average number of cases has been dropping.

Life Link

Man airlifted after being pinned under truck in northern MN

The incident happened near Nisswa, Minnesota.

Screen Shot 2022-10-06 at 8.37.44 AM

St. Paul company ends corrugated manufacturing, cutting 130 jobs

The facility produces around 200,000 tons of corrugated packaging every year.

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

Sartell woman, 94, killed in collision with semi-truck

The crash happened in Haven Township near St. Cloud.

fire truck

Explosion reported near Hastings; man airlifted to hospital

Authorities say the victim has serious injuries.

Related