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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Illinois

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, June 26, 2020

Aurora Man Arrested On Federal Civil Disorder Charge For Allegedly Throwing An Explosive Device At A Naperville Police Vehicle

CHICAGO — An Aurora man was arrested today on a federal civil disorder charge for allegedly throwing an explosive or incendiary device at a Naperville Police Department vehicle during a protest earlier this month.

                CHRISTIAN REA threw the explosive device in the proximity of the police vehicle, and the officers that were standing near the vehicle, which subsequently detonated causing an explosion, according to a criminal complaint and affidavit filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago.  Panic ensued in the crowd of protesters, with people running in all directions, the complaint states.

The complaint charges Rea, 19, with one count of civil unrest.  Federal authorities arrested Rea Thursday morning.  An initial federal court appearance was held on June 25, 2020, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Beth Jantz.

The complaint and arrest were announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the FBI. Valuable assistance was provided by the Naperville Police Department, the Aurora Police Department, and the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force. The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Barry Jonas.

“Federal law enforcement will use all tools available to hold accountable individuals who interfere with law enforcement officers performing their duties during a civil disorder,” said U.S. Attorney Lausch.  “We will continue to work with our federal, state, and local partners to apprehend and charge individuals engaging in violent crime.”

The public is reminded that a complaint is not evidence of guilt.  The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  The charge in the complaint is punishable by a maximum sentence of 5 years in federal prison.  If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.

Updated June 26, 2020