No bond for teen charged in Evanston bomb plot

July 11, 2011 4:21:39 PM PDT
Federal prosecutors are awaiting results of psychiatrist tests on a North Side teenager who stands accused of planting a bomb at an Evanston police station. In this intelligence report: Video of an incident that may have triggered that bomb plot.

Federal agents say Sergio Chaves is a daily drug abuser who has mental problems. Combined with his knack for building explosives, authorities concluded the teenager was potentially lethal. A federal judge agrees, ordering Chaves held without bond after being charged last month with placing a bomb behind an Evanston police building.

Evanston police had Chaves in custody one year ago this week-- and even then questioned the teenager's sobriety, if not his mental stability.

Squad car camera video taken at a minor traffic accident last summer -- and obtained by The I-Team after a Freedom of Information filing -- shows Chaves. On the tape, Chaves can be heard slurring his words and seen swaying back and forth, disobeying numerous police orders as he was put through a series of field sobriety tests, failing each one.

The North Sider said he had not taken any illegal drugs, although he later admitted having smoked marijuana and taking five Xanax pills.

As Chaves was handcuffed and taken away he became more agitated with Evanston police. Last month, with Chaves still on court supervision, he was arrested after authorities say he called Evanston police about a bomb in a garbage can behind one of their substations.

Federal agents say the former Boy Scout and avid hockey player had learned how to build explosives on the Internet, constructed with nails, shards of glass and .22-caliber ammunition.

In newly filed court documents, federal prosecutors state Chaves "deliberately created a potentially violent situation because he needed money. He wanted a monetary reward for notifying the police about the explosive device."

The bomb did not detonate, and no one was hurt, but federal agents say it had the potential to do damage and to cause injuries.

A judge has now ruled Chaves is dangerous and ordered him held without bond.

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