(STAR TRIBUNE) — A district judge on Monday dismissed the most serious charges against John LaDue, the Waseca teenager accused of secretly plotting a school massacre this spring, saying prosecutors hadn’t shown that the boy’s actions went beyond “mere preparation.’’
Judge Gerald Wolf dismissed all four charges of attempted premeditated murder against LaDue, as well as two charges of attempted first-degree damage to property, noting that the state “failed to show that [LaDue] made a substantial step … toward the commission” of the crimes.
Wolf let stand six charges that LaDue was in possession of explosive devices.
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The decision means a drastically different case for LaDue, who, if certified as an adult, faced up to 18 years in prison if convicted of one count of first-degree attempted murder. The remaining charges — possessing an incendiary device — carry much lesser sentences, his defense attorney said.