Dragnet for MAGAbomber — Biden, De Niro targeted
Federal law enforcement is not taking attempted assassinations of Democrats who have served as president, vice president secretary of state, attorney general, CIA director, congresswoman and activist fundraisers sitting down. The MAGAbomber may not have succeeded in killing or injuring anyone (yet), but the terrorist targeting Democrats is Public Enemy Number One.
Investigators in New York are working around the clock, poring over video from local business and other surveillance cameras in the area near the Time Warner Center in search of the courier who delivered what turned out to be a suspicious package to the building’s mail room where CNN is located. They are also looking to see if anyone may be identified as possibly doing their own pre-surveillance of the building in the days leading up to the delivery of the device.
Investigators from the FBI-NYPD Joint Terrorism Task Force — as well as bomb techs, agents from the FBI and ATF, and U.S. Secret Service – have been searching for clues or so-called “forensic digital footprints” that could lead them to the individual or individuals responsible.
The explosive devices did not blow up so investigators have a trove of potential evidence available to them. They will be able to find serial numbers and lot numbers on the devices’ components which will help them determine the stores or where online the materials to make the bombing devices were purchased.
Investigators in New York are also reviewing license plate readers located at every bridge and tunnel crossing recording every vehicle entering or leaving Manhattan.
Multiple law enforcement sources say one of the bombs consisted of PVC tubing and used a digital clock connected to a small battery as a possible trigger device, CBS News’ Jeff Pegues reports. Pyrotechnic powder was the explosive, and in order to keep it lightweight, glass was used as shrapnel.
Investigators think whoever put the device together was trying to keep the weight down so that they could put in a mailbox without having to appear at a post office for mailing.
The six packages were all similar in appearance. The large manila envelopes with six American flag “Forever” stamps will now be analyzed at the FBI laboratory in Quantico, Virginia. Investigators will deconstruct them, looking to trace the origin of the wiring and the other components to see where and when they may have been purchased and by whom.
Overnight, the names of two more MAGAbomber targets emerged’
Two additional pipe bombs, one addressed to former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and the other to actor Robert De Niro have been found, law enforcement officials said on Thursday, the latest in a wave of similar devices sent to several prominent Democrats who have been have been the rhetorical targets of President Trump and several right-wing figures.
A law enforcement official said the envelope and printed address labels on the package sent to Mr. De Niro were similar to those on explosives sent to former President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and others, and an X-ray showed it contained a similar device resembling a pipe bomb.
“This appears to be from the same sender,” the official said.
It does not take a degree in criminal justice to see a pattern here, nor does it take a degree in political science to anticipate the White House and Republicans grasping for a “both sides” false analogy.
Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama, Mr. Soros and CNN have all figured prominently in right-wing political attacks — many of which have been led by Mr. Trump. He has often referred to major news organizations as “the enemy of the people” and has shown contempt for CNN.
Mr. Trump, speaking at the White House on Wednesday, called the attempted bombings “despicable acts.”
“In these times we have to unify,” Mr. Trump said. “We have to come together and send one very clear, strong, unmistakable message that acts or threats of political violence of any kind have no place in the United States of America.”
He continued in the same vein later Wednesday at a rally in Wisconsin, encouraging “all sides to come together in peace and harmony,” before taking aim at the news media.
Media experts on law enforcement are unanimous in pointing out that the ten explosive packages are a bonanza of forensic evidence, and we would not be surprised if there are arrests before the weekend is over.
Expect this story to develop rapidly.