Feds confirm Scottsdale bomb sent by mail - East Valley Tribune: News

Feds confirm Scottsdale bomb sent by mail

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Posted: Thursday, February 26, 2004 1:50 pm | Updated: 4:34 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

Federal investigators say the bomb that exploded and injured three Scottsdale city employees Thursday traveled through the U.S. mail — one of only two package explosives in the country since 2002, a spokesman for the investigation said.

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The U.S. Postal Service has assumed the lead role in what has been described as several parallel investigations into the package bomb that injured three people when it exploded about 1 p.m. Thursday inside the city's Human Resources complex at 7575 E. Main St.

The Postal Service is offering a reward of up to $100,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of a suspect in Thursday's bombing, U.S. Postal Inspector Bob Maes said.

He said remnants of the package indicated it had gone through the postal system.

No information was released Friday on why the bomb was sent to Don Logan, 48, the director of the city's office of cultural diversity.

Logan, hospitalized for burn and shrapnel injuries to his hands and forearms, is expected to make a full recovery, city spokesman Mike Phillips said Friday. Logan's secretary, Renita Linyard, 52, who was struck in the face and eye with shrapnel, also is expected to recover.

Tom Mangan, with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, said Logan was fortunate to have survived the blast that blew a golf-ball-sized hole on the top of his desk and scattered shrapnel into the floor, walls, ceiling and furniture of his office cubicle.

“If this had detonated outside, we would have had debris that traveled 100 yards,” Mangan said.

Most of the bomb's debris was contained inside the roughly 60-square-foot area of Logan's modular office space, Mangan said.

Bomb technicians from across the Valley collected evidence from the office until 10:30 p.m. Thursday. Debris and bomb remnants have been sent to a forensic laboratory in Dulles, Va.

Officials are not releasing details about the type of device, shrapnel or exact size of the package that another employee brought to Logan from a mailroom at the office. Scottsdale police Sgt. Doug Dirren on Thursday described the package as 8 x 11 inches wide. The package was addressed to Logan. Mangan said he would not characterize it as a letter bomb.

“Of course, a lot of the details of the investigation — the specifics as far as the make-up of the bomb and the way it was sent — are all important (details) for us to not share just due to the need to question possible suspects and witnesses,” Maes said. As with all bomb investigations, technicians will try to reconstruct the explosive device and will compare evidence from it to other materials in a national database, Mangan said.

“The devices often offer unique signatures of the people who construct them,” he said.

Maes said the another bomb was sent through the mail last month to a New Jersey resident. Prior to that, the country has not had a mail bomb since 2002. Last March, a partial bomb was sent to a private citizen in Maryvale, Maes said, but it did not contain all the necessary components for a bomb and did not explode. The case is still under investigation.

Maes said the U.S. Postal Service, in conjunction with local and federal investigators, has a good solve rate when it comes to mail bombs in recent years. Between 1998 and 2002, the country had 23 mailed packages explode. Authorities made 15 arrests in those cases, 14 of which have resulted in convictions, he said.

The last package bomb in the Valley was in March 2000, said Mangan. A Revlon executive picked up a package left on his front door at his Chandler home, carried it into his kitchen where it exploded when he opened it, Mangan said.

A suspect in the case will face multiple charges at local, state and federal levels — including a sentence of up to 20 years on the charge of sending an explosive device through the mail, Maes said.

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