A man who was arrested and charged with a second-degree felony after notifying police of a bomb threat in Logan — although investigation turned up no evidence of such a threat — entered into a diversion agreement on Wednesday after Cache County prosecutors lessened the severity of the charge.
Zachary Aaron Kidd, 36, now faces a class-A misdemeanor count of attempted making of a false alarm. Documents filed with the court show the class-A charge can now be dismissed provided certain terms of a diversion agreement are met.
During Kidd’s appearance in court on Wednesday, defense attorney Ryan Holdaway told the court many of the agreement’s terms would be satisfied in short order, and Judge Brian Cannell scheduled a review in the case on Sept. 1.
“I appreciate you handling these challenges straight up,” said Judge Brian Cannell.
On Jan. 31, according to an affidavit filed with the court, police responded to a local grocery store on a report of a person “mumbling about a bomb threat at the courthouse.”
When law enforcement arrived, police wrote Kidd “blurted out” allegations of an active bomb threat. Kidd told officers, according to the affidavit, a car would be located at the courthouse and the building needed to be evacuated. When asked about the bomb threat, police wrote Kidd “replied it doesn’t exist yet, but there is a real threat due to two judges playing dirty.”
A car was located on the courthouse lawn, police wrote, but “no explosives were located in Zach’s vehicle.” It was later confirmed no explosives were found in the courthouse building either.
Holdaway told The Herald Journal that Kidd’s initial statements to police vacillated between a potential and active threat. According to Holdaway, Kidd was trying to notify law enforcement of that threat and it was “pretty clear to everybody involved” that there were mental health considerations at play.
“He never threatened to bomb,” Holdaway said. “It was pretty clear that he was there, in his mind, to deliver a warning that someone either had or was going to be planting a bomb.”
Holdaway spoke to the lack of resources available to people who receive criminal charges stemming from a mental health-related incident. For Holdaway, oftentimes when a mental health incident gets “really extreme” the individual is “more or less, lumped in” with other individuals with “criminogenic behaviors.”
“I don’t think it’s a problem that’s unique to this area either,” Holdaway said. “I think it’s been an ongoing problem for a lot of states.”
While he was pleased with the resolution in the case, Holdaway said it was “unfortunate that everybody had to go through what they had to to get there.” For Holdaway, rather than using the criminal justice system, it’d be preferable to have a more proactive alternative to handle similar incidents.
“In the end, we got where we needed to,” Holdaway said. “I’m glad we got there, I just wish we would have started it off a little differently.”