Seaside Park bomber faces arraignment hearing Thursday

A bomb squad technician near the garbage can explosion site in Seaside Park on Sept 17

A bomb squad technician near the garbage can explosion site in Seaside Park on Sept 17

A man accused of setting off bombs in Seaside Park, New Jersey and in New York City is due to be arraigned on charges he tried to kill police officers.

Prosecutors say Ahmad Khan Rahami’s hearing is scheduled for Thursday in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Rahami is due to take part via video from his hospital bed.

Rahami is an Afghan-born U.S. citizen. He’s hospitalized with gunshot wounds after a police shootout that led to his capture Sept. 19 outside a bar in Linden. He’s charged with five counts of attempted murder of a police officer.

Rahami is accused of detonating a pipe bomb in a New Jersey shore town and a pressure cooker bomb in New York City on Sept. 17, injuring 31 people.

His public defenders have a policy of not commenting on cases.

The New Jersey Courts website explains how an arraignment works in the Garden State. 

A formal arraignment occurs no later than 50 days after an indictment. Upon notification by the Criminal Division, defendants must appear and face formal notification of their charges. They may plead guilty at this point, either to the charges listed in the indictment, or to revised charges resulting from plea negotiations. If plea negotiations are ongoing, the parties may review the status of the plea offer. Defendants may also opt to apply for the Pretrial Intervention program at this juncture, or be admitted into the program if they have not applied prior to arraignment. If a guilty plea is entered at the formal arraignment, Criminal Division judges order a presentence investigation to be conducted by Criminal Division case supervisors. Sentencing will follow the presentence investigation, generally 4 to 6 weeks after convictions.


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