Teen accused in school plot to be placed in state facility

John LaDue leaves the Waseca County Courthouse
John LaDue leaves the Waseca County Courthouse after a hearing Jan. 6 in Waseca, Minn.
Pat Christman | The Free Press via AP file

Updated 2:30 p.m. | Posted 5:56 a.m.

The Waseca teen accused of planning a school shooting in 2014 will not go home today after all.

John LaDue was set to return from jail to his parents' home to await an opening in a state treatment facility. But officials found a bed for him at an undisclosed location late Wednesday.

His father said Thursday he doesn't know where his son is headed.

LaDue, 19, was 17 when he was arrested in April 2014 after police found him in a storage unit with bomb-making materials.

He originally faced charges of attempted murder tied to allegations he planned to kill his family and then attack classmates at Waseca Junior and Senior High School. Authorities said they'd discovered a journal allegedly outlining his plans for the attacks

A judge dismissed the more serious charges in July. He was sentenced in October to 10 years' probation and an unspecified amount of time in a treatment facility as part of a plea deal.

A plan to send him to a secure autism spectrum facility in Georgia fell through. That opened the door to LaDue possibly being allowed to go home after jail. That changed when officials found a spot for him in a state facility.

"I was eagerly looking forward to seeing him and it sounds like that's been changed and if so, I don't know why this happened at the last minute," his father, David LaDue, said Thursday.

"Maybe I'd feel differently if I thought John was exhibiting dangerous signs to himself or anyone else," he added. "I wouldn't imagine that he would be flagged to be someone that's urgently needs to be rushed to the top of this list."

Your support matters.

You make MPR News possible. Individual donations are behind the clarity in coverage from our reporters across the state, stories that connect us, and conversations that provide perspectives. Help ensure MPR remains a resource that brings Minnesotans together.