FBI Offers Reward In Bomb Scare

Friday, March 30th 2007, 2:39 pm
By: News On 6

MUSKOGEE, Okla. (AP) -- The FBI on Friday offered a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person who placed an explosive device outside a Jewish temple last week in Muskogee. The device was made of an explosive material contained in cooking oil containers and placed inside a shopping cart that was discovered Saturday, March 24, outside the Temple Beth Ahaba, said FBI spokesman Gary Johnson.

The device was deactivated by bomb technicians with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol and the FBI and sent to an FBI laboratory Quantico, Va., for analysis, Johnson said. He declined to say what explosives were used.

A man discovered the device at the temple Saturday evening, removed a homemade timer that was connected to it and brought the timer to a nearby fire department, said FBI agent Kyle Bonath.

The cooking oil containers used to make the device were discarded from a Charlie's Chicken restaurant about a mile from where the temple is located in downtown Muskogee, Bonath said.

"We're hoping someone saw someone removing that material from the trash bin or transporting it to the location," Bonath said. "We feel the public probably saw something that could help us with this case."

Bonath said the device may have been placed next to the temple as early as Wednesday.

Although a specific motive hasn't been determined, the incident is being investigated as a hate crime, Bonath said.

The synagogue was vandalized with a Nazi symbol last year.

Muskogee police evacuated several buildings and homes in a five-block area near the temple after the device was discovered.

There are no suspects in the case. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Muskogee Resident Agency of the FBI at (918) 687-7500 or Crimestoppers at (918) 682-2677. You may remain anonymous.

Related Stories:

3/24/2007 OHP Bomb Squad Called To Jewish Temple

3/25/2007 Investigation Into Suspicious Device Outside Synagogue Continues

3/26/2007 Bomb Hoax Possibly A Hate Crime, Says FBI

3/29/2007 Device Found Near Muskogee Jewish Temple Could Have Exploded