ELKHORN

A Walworth County judge will decide next month if institutional care is required and for how long after the court accepted a town of Bloomfield man’s mental illness pleas last week in an explosives case, court records show.

The prosecution did not dispute the finding that Robert J. Leathers, 46, of N2020 County H, No. 219, was guilty of throwing explosives out of his car while driving, but at the same time was not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect, according to online court records.

The court Feb. 8 accepted Leathers’ mental illness pleas on five counts of second-degree recklessly endangering safety with use of a dangerous weapon and one count of possessing explosives for an unlawful purpose. Another count of possessing explosives and a count of intentionally pointing a firearm at a person were dismissed and read in, court records show.

On Nov. 21, witnesses told police Leathers drove around throwing three to five explosive devices out of his vehicle while trying to run people over, according to the criminal complaint. The Kenosha County Bomb Squad reported finding five improvised explosive devices in the area, as well as two devices in his car and one in his home.

Mental illness cases include commitment hearings instead of sentencings. Both sides will be free to argue at Leathers’ commitment hearing at 11 a.m. Friday, March 23.

The maximum commitment period in Leathers’ case would be 87 years and six months, according to court records.

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