Doctors to evaluate competency of accused pipe bomber

FILE PHOTO: Alexander Youshock appears behind a bullet proof glass for his arraignment in August of 2009. (AP Photo)

December 30, 2009 6:05:02 PM PST
The teen accused of bringing pipe bombs and other weapons onto a San Mateo high school campus in August has been granted a hearing in San Mateo County Superior Court to determine whether he is competent to stand trial.

Alexander Youshock, 17, has been charged with attempted murder as well as other felony charges for the Aug. 24 incident at Hillsdale High School, Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.

At a hearing this morning in response to Youshock's defense attorney Jonathan McDougall's request for competency proceedings, a judge appointed two doctors to evaluate Youshock and set a Feb. 5 date for the receipt of their reports, according to Wagstaffe.

Youshock has been in custody without bail at Hillcrest Juvenile Hall since he was arrested the morning of the pipe bomb incident. He is being charged as an adult.

Police said Youshock set off two pipe bombs inside a hallway at the high school shortly after 8 a.m. He had also allegedly brought a chainsaw, a 2-foot sword and eight more homemade pipe bombs onto the campus.

The teacher who tackled Youshock was hailed as a hero afterward, along with the school's principal and several other school employees.

Youshock faces two counts of attempted murder, two counts of exploding a destructive device with intent to commit murder, one count of possession of a destructive device in a public place, one count of use of explosives in an act of terrorism, and two counts of possession of a deadly weapon.

He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

McDougall did not immediately return a call seeking comment today.


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