Rock Creek bomb suspect faces parole violation

Jason Schaefer, 26, lost part of his hand

Jason Schaefer appeared in court on October 16, 2017 for charges of violating his parole. (KOIN)
Jason Schaefer appeared in court on October 16, 2017 for charges of violating his parole. (KOIN)

HILLSBORO, Ore. (KOIN) — Jason Schaefer, the suspect in an incident where an explosive detonated in his hand, appeared in a Washington County court Monday afternoon on a separate charge.

Schaefer, 26, faced a judge on a parole violation. His left hand was completely bandaged in court after he lost part of it in the explosion during a traffic stop near NW 185th and NW Rock Creek Boulevard on October 11.

The Washington County bomb squad investigates Jason Schaefer’s car after he detonated a small explosive inside while evading authorities on October 11, 2017. (KOIN)

Neither the FBI nor the Washington County Sheriff’s Office will comment on what additional charges Schaefer may face.

“When you’re on probation there are terms you have to follow, including what you’re allowed to possess,” Jeff Talbot with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office said. “Based on the information investigators have learned, he was violating his parole. We believe he had substances and materials that you are not allowed to have while on probation.”

According to a bench warrant for Schaefer issued the day of the explosion, the FBI learned in September Schaefer was buying “numerous items that were causing concern” including explosive liquid, remotes to set off fireworks, more than 100 electric matches and at least a pound of hexamine, which can be used to make home-made explosives and is frequently used in suicide bombings.

The warrant said FBI agents arranged to search Schaefer’s apartment while he was being interviewed at the probation office on October 10. Agents learned he did have explosives that could be detonated remotely, giving authorities probable cause to arrest him on the charge of felon in possession of explosives.

During the traffic stop when Schaefer was apprehended, the explosion injured a detective. Talbot said that detective is expected to make a full recovery but may suffer some hearing loss.

The Washington County bomb squad investigates Jason Schaefer’s car after he detonated a small explosive inside while evading authorities on October 11, 2017. (KOIN)

“This is scary stuff, and dangerous stuff and what deputies deal with every day,” Talbot said. “Every time a deputy tries to stop someone for a crime or just a regular traffic stop, at any moment it can turn dangerous and potentially fatal.”

This case will be presented to the Washington County grand jury and detectives said they will take their time to build their case against Schaefer. Authorities are looking at a “full range” of charges.

But for now, Schaefer was only in court on a parole violation. His next court appearance on this charge is October 26.