CHICAGO — A federal jury has convicted a former Oakbrook Terrace man of detonating a pipe bomb at a west suburban train station more than 15 years ago, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois .
A federal jury in Chicago on Monday convicted Thomas James Zajac of detonating the bomb at a Hinsdale train station on Sept. 1, 2006, leaving the station damaged and a station officer injured.
Zajac, now 70, was found guilty of all three charges against him, including attempting to destroy property with an explosive device, possessing an unregistered destructive device and knowingly threatening by mail to kill or injure a person with an explosive device. Explosive device.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Zajac placed the pipe bomb in a trash can at the BNSF station in Hinsdale, which exploded during the morning commute. Zajac sent an anonymous letter to police a month after the attack, telling officers it was a “warning shot” and telling officers that any action on their part “would likely result in death” ‘a person. In the letter, Zajac told police he wanted to see if the department was “bright enough or possessed the character necessary to stop the death.”
During the trial, evidence was presented revealing that Zajac felt disrespected by Hinsdale police after the arrest of a family member in 2005.
Zajac, who is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 13, faces between five and 20 years in prison on the destruction of property charge and 10 years on the other two counts.
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