ROY -- Joshua Kyler Hoggan, who pleaded guilty in 2012 to possession of a weapon of mass destruction in a scheme to set off a bomb at Roy High School, is running for mayor of Roy.
Hoggan's filing creates a primary race for Hoggan, current Mayor Joe Ritchie and current Councilman Willard Cragun.
Hoggan served six months at a juvenile detention facility. Because he pleaded guilty, prosecutors abandoned the idea of trying him as an adult. In turn, that allows Hoggan to run for mayor.
City Recorder Amy Mortenson said Hoggan, now 18, is clear to run because the juvenile record is sealed. Had he been tried and found guilty as an adult, it would be a different situation.
City Manager Chris Davis said all the candidates were cleared by the Utah Lieutenant Governor's Office to run. All candidates are required to have their identity and signatures notarized and must be screened by the lieutenant governor's office, Davis said.
Davis hasn't personally talked with Hoggan about running, but he isn't necessarily surprised by his running.
"We have all sorts of people run for different reasons," Davis said.
Davis added that Hoggan's age isn't really anything new, either.
"We have had young people run for city council," Davis said.
Ritchie said Hoggan is definitely within his rights to run, and because he meets all the requirements of the state to be a candidate, he can go for it. Ritchie also said he has not spoken with Hoggan and hadn't given it much thought.
Ritchie said he remembers that at the time of the bomb plot it was a great concern for him and others in the city; however, Ritchie said he would not address it as the mayor or as a candidate.
"It's all history now," Ritchie said.
The issue might come up at a meet-the-candidates night in the future, Ritchie said.
"He has caused a primary, which costs the voters a lot of money," Ritchie said.
In an email, Hoggan said he chose to run for mayor based on the idea of change in Roy. He said younger leaders would be more efficient, because they could bring some fresh ideas to the community. As for his past, he knows that will play a role in his bid for mayor.
"I feel that my past with the Roy High School incident can definitely play a role in whether I could gain enough votes to secure the mayoral role," he wrote.
However, he also thinks that past and his conduct since the incident show that has been successfully rehabilitated and can be trusted with the future of the community.
"I've made more than my fair share of mistakes, and I feel that being trusted with the mayorship would be the ultimate way for me to fully give back to my community," he added.
He noted that his time in juvenile detention helped him to clear his head and put him on the right track to make positive changes in the community.
Hoggan is currently in his second semester at Weber State University. He is majoring in political science.