A political candidate. A blogger who has held grudges. A bombing suspect. All of the above describes Eric Krieg from Munster.
A year after being arrested and charged with sending a device that caused an explosion in a postal facility east of Chicago, Krieg has been attributed another label: guilty.
Krieg, 46, of Munster pleaded guilty to knowingly fabricating an unregistered destroyer device, sent a destructive device, maliciously used explosives, and sent a threatening communication, according to a statement from the US Attorney Thomas Kirsch released Tuesday.
According to the press release, the parties agreed on a 29-year sentence of imprisonment and the plea hearing will be entrusted to the Chief Justice of the US District Court Joseph Van Bokkelen at Hammond Federal Court House.
The explosion occurred on September 6, 2017 in a postal facility east of Chicago. Krieg was arrested in October 2017 and has been in detention ever since.
A blogger who has grudges
In her plea agreement, Krieg said he was blogging and participating in "a series of online messages and communications about other residents of northwestern Indiana," where the grudge that had motivated in his decision to create and ship the explosives held.
Kreig, who had previously run for the Lake County offices, has published political blogs under the nickname "Buzzcut".
Krieg stated that the first victim was a Schererville lawyer who represented a client who had filed a lawsuit against him. Krieg was sued in 2013 following statements on his blog regarding the arrest of Aaron McDermott, brother of Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr.
Krieg declared bankruptcy in response to the complaint, but Aaron McDermott's lawyer, David Westland, said the lawsuit could not be terminated and that Krieg had agreed to settle the lawsuit by paying $ 45,000 to McDermott and apologizing on his blog.
"In retaliation for the filing and settlement of this lawsuit and other grudges that I had, I have developed a plan for the construction and shipment of a home-made bomb." who, I hoped, and who thought they could kill or wound the victim, "1 says Krieg's plea agreement. "I built this homemade bomb and I knew it contained explosives and objects that could produce shrapnel." The bomb was built in the northern district of Indiana. The hand-made bomb was not registered in the National Register of Firearms Registration and Transfer. "
However, the bomb exploded in a post office in east Chicago and injured a pregnant woman.
"On September 6, 2017, I placed the bomb tube by mail by delivering it to the US Post Office, at 901 East Chicago Avenue, in East Chicago, Indiana, and ensuring that that he be franked appropriately, "said Krieg's plea agreement. posted the homemade bomb with the intention of killing or injuring the victim 1. I am aware of the homemade bomb explosion before it is delivered to the victim 1 and that 's rather, she injured victim 2, a postal worker. I damaged the post office where the bomb exploded. At the time of the explosion, the post was used in interstate commerce or as part of an activity affecting interstate commerce. "
Another person, labeled "Victim 3" in the plea agreement, was targeted because Krieg said he was upset and that he was holding a grudge against the northwestern resident. from Indiana with whom he had engaged online.
According to the US Attorney's Office, an employee of the City of Hammond allegedly sent Mr. Krieg the threatening letter received on September 29, 2017, which contained a bullet and a note saying, "The next letter will be in your head."
"On September 29, 2017, I posted a death threat or injury to the victim 3," said Krieg's plea agreement. "I put this threatening communication in a courier in the North District of Indiana, who was charged, and I now know that I was handed over to Victim 3 in the North District of l & # 39; Indiana. "
Criticism against the treatment of drainage projects by the Lake County Surveyor and against Mayor Hammond's campaign expenses were among the political scuffles in which Krieg was at the center of concern.
In 2012, Krieg was right in George Van Til as a Republican candidate for the Lake County Surveyor and was also a county council candidate several times.
Kreig is also a former BP Whiting refinery engineer and the father of four children, according to the Times archive.
In December 2017, Krieg pleaded not guilty to fabricating and mailing explosive devices and a threat note.
In April 2018, he requested a time limit for his federal trial, in which he was originally scheduled to be tried at the end of May.
US District Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen agreed to give Krieg and his lawyer, Kevin Milner, several more months to prepare for a jury trial scheduled to open in the week of November 5th.
US Deputy Attorney Jennifer Chang opposed the defense's request as an unreasonable delay, arguing that the injured postal worker was pregnant at the time and had suffered both emotional and physical distress.
Chang also claimed that the person targeted by Krieg as a bomb target had also experienced months of stress and that the victim's family had planned his schedule based on the location of the original trial in May and wanted the trial to proceed. unfolds quickly.
In October, the US prosecutor's office announced that the jury trial was postponed until June 2019. Krieg asked the Federal Court that the trial was postponed again to give his lawyer time to prepare.
According to the US prosecutor's office, Krieg's plea hearing will take place "in the near future".
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