Waseca teen 'wanted as many victims as possible,' he says in court documents

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John LaDue makes court appearance.
Waseca Co. Sheriff deputies escort 17-year-old John LaDue into court on May 12, 2014.
Elizabeth Baier/MPR News

In an interview the night of his arrest, 17-year-old John LaDue told Waseca police that he had made plans to kill his family and then attack classmates at Waseca Junior and Senior High School, according to court records released Tuesday.

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Police officers had encountered LaDue at a storage locker on April 29 after a nearby resident reported suspicious activity. In searches of his house and the storage locker, police said they found a gun, explosives, bomb-making supplies and a journal allegedly outlining his plans for the attacks.

I'd detonate [another] one while people were fleeing, just like the Boston bombings, and blow them up too.

Waseca County prosecutors charged LaDue in early May with four counts of attempted first-degree murder, six counts of possessing explosive or incendiary devices and two counts of criminal damage to property. LaDue entered a denial plea, the juvenile equivalent of a not-guilty plea.

In audiotapes also released Tuesday, LaDue told an officer that he set off explosives that had been found earlier in the year at a school playground and local church.

In an interview at the Waseca Police Department, the teen described how he wanted to attack the Waseca Junior and Senior High School sometime before the end of the school year. He would start the attack by blowing up a pressure cooker in the hallway between class periods.

"I'd detonate [another] one while people were fleeing, just like the Boston bombings, and blow them up too," LaDue told the officer. "Then my plans were to enter and throw Molotov cocktails and pipe bombs and destroy everyone, and then when the SWAT comes, I would destroy myself."

I think I'm just really mentally ill and no one's noticed that I've been trying to hide it.

LaDue said he'd planned to "dispose" of his family prior to attacking the school.

"They did nothing wrong," LaDue said in response to a question from police about why he'd target his family. "I just wanted as many victims as possible."

The teen repeatedly said during the interview that he wanted to talk to a psychiatrist or receive a psychiatric assessment. He said he didn't know why he wanted to commit the violent acts.

"I have good parents, I live in a good town," LaDue told the officer. "I think I'm just really mentally ill and no one's noticed that I've been trying to hide it."

The hearing to decide whether LaDue is tried as an adult will likely take place next month. MPR News is reporting the name of the teen because of the severity of the charges and the high-profile nature of the events.

LaDue's lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the court documents.