A Washington man who will face 20 years or more in prison if found guilty of setting off two explosions in recent months, could face additional charges if prosecutors determine his motivation was to harass, intimidate, assault or stalk his ex-girlfriends.
The 18-year-old was severely injured by a pipe bomb earlier this month. It is at least the second time, police say, he has made a bomb to scare a former girlfriend. The man went to an emergency room in early January with a serious hand injury caused by an explosion. He was accompanied by a 22-year-old man with internal injuries. Police searched the suspects pickup truck in the hospital parking lot and found the vehicle had “significant blast damage.” Police speculate the man lit the fuse in anticipation of throwing the pipe bomb out the truck window.
The bombing occurred near the home of the man's ex-girlfriend. Police believe the man detonated a similar device late last year near the home of another ex-girlfriend. Although police investigated that incident, no one was injured and no one was arrested.
The 18-year-old is expected to be booked into jail when he is released from the hospital. His companion was taken into custody after receiving medical treatment.
Having possession of an explosive device, be it a shell, bomb, or similar device, charged or filled with one or more explosives, and intending to use it for an unlawful purpose is a Class A felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison, or a $50,000, or both. However, the man could face a host of other charges, including malicious mischief, reckless endangerment, assault, stalking and domestic violence. Penalties for those crimes range from felonies garnering life sentences to gross misdemeanors for which the man could face up to a year in jail for each charge, or a $5,000 fine, or both.
A person is guilty of harassment if he or she threatens to:
- Cause bodily injury immediately or in the future; or
- Cause physical damage to the property of a person; or
- Subject the person threatened or any other person to physical confinement or restraint; or
- Maliciously do any other act which is intended to substantially harm the person or another with respect to his or her physical or mental health or safety.
In addition, to qualify as harassment, the person threatened must have reasonable fear that the threats will be carried out.
Depending upon the cost of the damage caused by the bombs, it is possible the man could be charged with malicious mischief in the first- or second degree. He also could face charges of reckless endangerment if prosecutors decide his actions created a substantial risk of death or serious physical injury to another person.
The degree of a potential assault charge depends upon whether the man intended to “inflict great bodily harm,” as in assault in the first degree, or if he intended to recklessly inflict “substantial bodily harm” as a measure of assault in the second degree.
Stalking charges could apply, too, if the man intentionally and repeatedly harassed, frightened or intimidated the women and placed them in fear of harm, as could charges of domestic violence if the man's intent was “infliction of fear of imminent physical harm.”
Do not let a lapse in judgement ruin your life. No matter the crime, every defendant has a right to representation by a qualified attorney. If you have been arrested and face criminal charges, call the Seattle law office of Steve Karimi at (206) 621-8777 or contact him online.