Teen accused of Waseca school bomb plot could be allowed to go home


John LaDue, the teenager suspected of plotting a massacre at a southern Minnesota high school, could be released to his parents' house next week.

The Mankato Free Press reports the 19-year-old cannot be held in Waseca County Jail any more as of Jan. 28 – the end of his sentence for possessing an explosive device – and a placement at a state-run mental health evaluation facility has not been made available at this stage.

In a case that rocked Waseca and Minnesota as a whole, LaDue was accused of planning to set off bombs at his high school and kill his family, a plan detailed in a journal found by investigators along with bomb-making materials in his bedroom and a storage unit in 2014.

He pleaded guilty to the explosives charge in October, but attempted murder charges against him were dismissed after his defense team argued he had not intended to carry out the massacre.

The original plan was for LaDue to head to a secure autism spectrum disorder facility in Georgia following the end of his sentence, only for the southern state to say they didn't want him, the Free Press notes.

The new plan, decided on Jan. 9, was to put him in an evaluation facility in Minnesota under a strict treatment plan – but there are only 12 beds of this kind in the state, all of which are currently taken.

As the Star Tribune reports, a court hearing on Wednesday heard that if a bed doesn't open up by Jan. 28, officials will release LaDue back to his parents home under probation until one becomes available.

The Waseca County News reports that if if released to his parents home, LaDue – who has been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and has a "fixation on violence" – can't leave home unless traveling to pre-scheduled appointments.

His parents will also remove all firearms from the house and ensure he can't access the internet, the newspaper notes.

Judge Joseph Chase admitted he is "not very satisfied" with the situation, the Star Tribune says, and understood the people of Waseca wouldn't be either.

Chase has previously called for understanding from the people of Waseca toward LaDue, calling on the community not to shun him when he returns to the city, with health experts saying it would be counter-productive to turn him into "a pariah."

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