Judge orders Indiana bombing suspect jailed until trial

A federal magistrate Tuesday ordered a northwestern Indiana man to remain jailed until his trial on charges related to a pipe bomb explosion last month at a post office.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana Magistrate Judge John Martin heard arguments Tuesday from federal prosecutors and Eric Krieg's attorney on Krieg's request to have a bond amount set for his release.

The judge found that the 45-year-old Munster man poses a risk to the community and is a flight risk, based on the allegations he attempted to mail a bomb to the attorney, and then sent a threatening letter another city worker, The (Northwest Indiana) Times reported.

“It's very bold to injure someone with a device, and then to continue with other crimes,” Martin said.

Krieg was charged last week with knowing possession of a destructive device and transporting explosive materials.

A complaint alleges that he mailed a package at the East Chicago post office that exploded Sept. 6, injuring a postal worker, and that he mailed a suspicious package to another individual on Sept. 29.

Defense attorney Kevin Milner says Krieg has long-standing ties to the community and no passport and that he could be confined to his home with electronic monitoring, with regular unannounced visits by law enforcement.

The federal government alleges Krieg attempted to mail a pipe bomb Sept. 6 to an attorney who years earlier represented the brother of Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. in a defamation lawsuit filed against Krieg. The package exploded at the U.S. Post Office in East Chicago, injuring a postal worker. It caused no damage to the post office about 20 miles southeast of Chicago, Postal Inspector Mary T. Johnson has said.

Lake County election records show Krieg ran unsuccessfully for county surveyor as a Republican in 2012. In a candidate profile published by The (Northwest Indiana) Times at the time, Krieg said he was licensed professional engineer whose political experience including losing two years earlier in the primary election for County Council in the strongly Democratic county.

Krieg is next scheduled to appear at an arraignment and status hearing Nov. 20.

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