Forest City teen plans to plead guilty after being accused of setting off bomb in high school parking lot

FOREST CITY — One of the two 18-year-olds accused of setting off a bomb in the Forest City High School parking lot back in September is now planning to plead guilty.

David Rick and Landon Gerdes were charged with possession of explosive materials or a destructive device with the intent to use, and reckless use of explosives or a destructive device. Forest City police say an officer heard a loud explosion near the high school at about 9:30 on the night of September 7th, with the officer seeing multiple cars driving out of the school parking lot. The officer was able to talk to some of the kids leaving the area, and they said someone set off the bomb in the high school parking lot.

The officer then went to the parking lot and talked to some people still hanging around, with one person showing a video of the explosion and stating that Rick and Gerdes set off the bomb.

Gerdes’ trial was scheduled to start on Wednesday in Winnebago County District Court, but a court filing made on Tuesday set a plea and sentencing hearing for Gerdes on January 16th.

Rick recently filed a written plea of guilty to reckless use of explosives or destructive devices, a serious misdemeanor. As part of the plea agreement, Rick was given a deferred judgment and was placed on two years probation.