Family: Fatal Evanston explosion was suicide

September 15, 2010 7:41:11 PM PDT
New details have emerged about an explosion that claimed the life of a man in north suburban Evanston.A passer-by discovered the headless body of 21-year-old Colin Dalebroux near Nichols Middle School early Tuesday.

A blast decapitated the man. The bomb squad detonated evidence of two pipe bombs found near his body.

The school remained closed for a second day on Wednesday as police continued to investigate. Yellow police tape surrounds the adjacent Fitzsimmons Park, where nearby residents breathed a little easier.

"Unfortunately, I feel badly for this young man that he felt that life was so bad he had to do this to himself. But it was better than a random killer in the neighborhood," said Beverly Von Winckler, Evanston resident.

Late Wednesday Dalebroux's parents said in a statement they believed he committed suicide. "We are devastated that our beloved son... lost his 15-year battle with depression," the statement reads.

Dalebroux had no criminal record, though police in Madison, Wisconsin, where he last lived, say in June of 2009 they had two encounters with him, two days apart. Authorities there declined to say what the encounters were, only describing them as sensitive and non-criminal in nature.

Dalebroux lived in a corner ground-floor apartment in Evanston, just three blocks from where he died.

"He seemed like a nice guy. He had a girlfriend and once in a while they would smoke cigarettes at the front door," said Peter Wolf, neighbor.

Neighbors say he had just moved in, perhaps a couple months ago. His name isn't even in the resident call box.

"I noticed that he was to him himself. He stayed to himself. Whatever his business was, he went about his business," said another neighbor who did not want to be identified.

Police issued a statement late Wednesday afternoon, saying it appears Dalebroux acted alone, and that the public is in no immediate danger.

Classes are expected to resume Thursday at Nichols Middle School.


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