Dangling Chad | Year In Review | Chicago Reader

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Dangling Chad

What's a little terrorist hoax between friends?

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Coffee creamer isn't funny.

Just ask Chad Seabold, a 27-year-old job recruiter from Lakeview. On October 18, Seabold was charged with felony disorderly conduct for sprinkling Coffee-mate into an envelope addressed to Roger Pascual, one of his three roommates. The return address? "Fourth Grade, Green Dale School, Franklin Park, New Jersey."

Pascual and Seabold were fraternity brothers in college. So was Ryan Pirnat, another roommate who took the envelope off Pascual's dresser and tucked it into a pile of new mail. In court, Seabold said he couldn't remember whether he told Pirnat to do that.

Seabold had put the envelope through his office postage meter. While shuffling through household bills the following afternoon, Pascual saw white dust rising from the stamped letter. A typed message was inside:

"On September 11, the great event occurred under our control. This is the second face of many events that will occur in order to destroy the U.S. May this deadly powder cause you a slow but painless death. You are one of many that have been selected to receive this sooner or later. Consider to be lucky. What's planned for the future will be much more tragic and painful than your death."

A month later, Pascual was summoned as a witness by Cook County prosecutors. "I called the post office," he testified. "They said, 'Wash your hands.' And then I called the police."

Three cops and ten firefighters were already at the apartment by the time Seabold arrived home. He was read his rights, handcuffed, and, after spending the night in jail, freed on a $60,000 bond.

Pascual says he has no hard feelings toward Seabold--in fact, they're still roommates. "Things are pretty much back to normal."

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