Thursday, April 27, 2023

Fourth Spring Explosion: Two Bombs Blow Up In Weare New Hampshire

Two bombs blew up in the space of about 13 hours on rural streets in a small New Hampshire town, authorities said Thursday, asking for the public's help as they investigate what happened. One person was hit with shrapnel in the second explosion, which took place before 7 a.m. Thursday morning, but wasn't badly hurt. The explosive devices were similar but are not believed to have been targeting anyone or anything, according to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. "At this time, we do not believe there is any public safety issue," said James Ferguson, the top ATF agent in the Boston area. But he didn't rule out other devices appearing in the area, and said that the bombs that went off could have caused "significant damage" to a person close by. "If you do see anything smoking, do not approach it. It is certainly a safety hazard," Ferguson said. Weare Police Chief Christopher Moore said he wasn't increasing patrols in the town and is relying on the public's help to find the person or people responsible. He said the devices were "being thrown on the side of the road and then going off. It's unfortunate for our victim." The ATF said it informed the Secret Service of the incidents because of former President Trump’s visit to Manchester, New Hampshire on Thursday. Authorities said they’ve recovered both explosives from both scenes and said they are similar to each other. However, they’re looking to see if they’re related. Craig Waldron who came across the second bomb, described it as a PVC pipe with a blast so strong it blew out the side window of his van and with shrapnel kitting his face, causing minor injuries. “it was loud like someone was setting a canon off on the Fourth of July,” he said. “I slowed down, looked at it. I really couldn’t see much and then I started rolling away and then ‘bang!’ and it blew my window out.” Authorities said the bomb detonated roughly 12 hours and 6.5 miles apart. Investigators were on scene collecting evidence on Rhonda Frisch-Cooper’s property. 

 “They knocked on my door and they said: ‘Rhonda can we go on your property? And I said: ‘yeah why?’ And they told me it was a bomb,” said Frisch-Cooper who initially thought to have heard thunder. That same blast was felt by neighbors several yards away. “I felt the shockwave on my body and my face,” noted Thomas Loeff of the second explosion on Sugar Hill Road. The commotion also left families in the area like Christina Lamphre’s worried. She takes walks on the same road with her family and dogs every day. “I know the authorities are working hard to figure out what’s going on and just hoping that we get some answers soon and that people are careful,” she said. The blasts left a community wondering who could be behind the bombs. “No, it was not me.” Said Waldron. “I’m in this town to help people not hurt people. I build houses.” Investigators said they’ve ruled out Waldron as a suspect. They don’t believe anyone, or any place was a specific target. They’re asking residents living within a 2-mile radius of the blasts to report any suspicious activity or if they have any surveillance video, to share it with police. Both explosions temporarily shut down the rural stretches of road where they took place. The first explosion was reported about 6:10 p.m. Wednesday near a home on Dustin Tavern Road — New Hampshire Route 77 — south of Deering Center Road, according to police, and the second about 6:50 a.m. on Sugar Hill Road just north of Concord Stage Road. Police asked anyone with surveillance or dashboard cameras that show those stretches of road to share them with the department at 603-529-7755. Ferguson asked people with information or video to share it with the ATF at 888-ATF-TIPS (1-888-283-8477) or by emailing  Source

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