Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York City Police Department announced a reward of up to $115,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest, and conviction of the person or persons involved in the unsolved 2008 bombing of the United States Armed Forces Recruiting Station in Times Square.
The bombing may be connected to two other unsolved bombings in New York City—one at the British Consulate in 2005 and the other at the Mexican Consulate in 2007.
Through the course of the investigation, several people of interest have been identified and are actively being pursued.
The origin of the components of the explosive device has been identified and is being investigated. The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force thanks those who have come forward and assisted with the investigation thus far, but stressed that the public’s help is still needed. The case remains a top priority of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force due to the seriousness of the crime. There is no statute of limitations.
Early on the morning of Thursday, March 6, 2008, a bomb exploded in New York’s Times Square at the Armed Forces Recruiting Station. The suspect rode a blue Ross bicycle west on 37th Street, took a right up Sixth Avenue, and made a left on 47th Street before turning left down Seventh Avenue.
The suspect got off his bike near the recruiting station at West 43rd Street and Seventh Avenue, placed the explosive device at the recruiting station, lit a fuse, and fled the scene on the bicycle. Although the suspect appears to be working alone, he or she may have had a lookout or surveillance team of as many as five other individuals in Times Square at the time of the attack.
The suspect then rode his or her bike south on Broadway before turning left on 38th Street. The bike was later recovered in a dumpster near Madison Avenue and 38th Street. The suspect on the bicycle was last seen wearing a gray sweatshirt and pants of an undetermined color.
“Someone knows those responsible for placing this device in the heart of New York City,” said FBI Assistant Director in Charge Diego Rodriguez. “We need those people to come forward to help us solve this crime before they can strike again.”
“Moments before the device detonated, individuals walked by, unaware of the potential danger and imminent explosion,” said Police Commissioner William J. Bratton. “We are again reaching out to the public, urging anyone with any information to please come forward to assist us with this investigation so that the persons involved in this plot can be held responsible for this attack.”
The explosive device was built using an ammunition can commonly found on the battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan. It was filled halfway with black powder and detonated using a time fuse. Although no one was wounded, the device could have caused significant casualties if people had been close to the blast.
Details of this bombing are similar to those of two other unsolved bombings that occurred in New York City—one at the British Consulate in May 2005 and the other at the Mexican Consulate in October 2007. All of the devices were delivered by an individual on a bicycle and were detonated between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. The incidents may be connected.
A reward of up to $115,000 is being offered for information leading to the identification, arrest, and conviction of the person(s) responsible for the 2008 bombing of the U.S. Armed Forces Recruiting Station. Any information about the suspect(s), the bicycle, or any other details could be pertinent.
Anyone with information on any of the three bombings is encouraged to call the FBI at 212-384-1000. Tipsters may remain anonymous.
The investigation is being conducted by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force in Manhattan, which is composed of FBI agents, NYPD detectives, and members of more than 50 local, state, and federal agencies. The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force is being assisted by prosecutors from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. There is no statute of limitations on this crime.