Man accused of bringing bombs to Capitol undergoing mental evaluation

Police say man had Molotov cocktails in his backpack

Published On: Jan 17 2013 10:17:30 PM CST   Updated On: Jan 18 2013 07:34:44 AM CST
MADISON, Wis. -

The man who calls Kvon Smith his son said he's stunned at the charges Smith is facing.

Capitol police arrested Smith on Tuesday in the Capitol rotunda hours before Gov. Scott Walker was scheduled to deliver the State of the State address.

Police said Smith had a backpack with several bottles full of rubbing alcohol, chalk and motor oil. Smith videotaped himself making the mixture of Molotov cocktails on Facebook and wrote he was going to the Capitol to do harm, police said.

Don Nevaiser said it wasn't Smith talking but rather his illness. For 12 years, Nevaiser helped raise Smith, who he said has been diagnosed with schizophrenia and recently stopped taking his medication.

In an interview Thursday, Nevaiser shared what Smith recently wrote and submitted with his college applications.

"I also value education, which I believe is extremely important and necessary to excel in our society," read Nevaiser, who said Smith went on to study business at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Nevaiser is an author, life coach and Smith's longtime Big Brother through the Dane County program.

"He became, over the years, my son and I became his father, and we've been referring to each other that way and considering each other that for years," Nevaiser said.

Two years ago, Smith entered the Air Force, but during basic training, his changing behavior led doctors to diagnose him with schizophrenia, Nevaiser said.

But recently, Smith quit his medication and Nevaiser doesn't know why.

"I didn't know, obviously, to what degree this disease had changed him," he explained.

A month of online rants, pending charges of fighting a Madison police officer and a visit to a Milwaukee mental health facility appear to have came to a head at the Capitol on Tuesday, Nevaiser said.

In a video posted on Smith's Facebook page, he references making Molotov cocktails that Capitol police said he had in his backpack when they arrested him inside the Capitol.

The Madison Fire Department said the materials weren't explosive but could catch fire. Smith faces six felony charges, including having Molotov cocktails and creating a bomb scare.

"The thing is, I can only hope to God that this blatant illness plays some role in getting the charges lessened," Nevaiser said.

Smith's initial court appearance Thursday was canceled because the district attorney said Smith is being evaluated at Mendota Mental Health Institute.

Another court date hasn't been set, although he is scheduled to be in court Jan. 28 on the charges stemming from the fight with a police officer.