May 3rd, 2010
09:20 PM ET

Latest Updates: Times Square car bomb scare

[Updated 6:32 a.m. ET] Authorities removed three passengers from a Dubai-bound flight late Monday, according to a spokesman for Emirate Airlines. An airline official said the three included Faisal Shahzad, the suspect arrested in connection to the foiled bomb attempt at Times Square. The other two passengers were allowed back on the flight, the official said.

[Updated 5 a.m. ET] Investigators searched a house in Bridgeport, Connecticut, early Tuesday morning in connection with the foiled bomb attack in New York's Times Square over the weekend.

Speaking to reporters, FBI Special Agent in Charge Kim Mertz would not disclose any details of the search.

"Our first misison was to ensure the safety of the public and our law enforcement officials," she said. "That is complete and the public is safe."

Along with several patrol cars, a Connecticut State Police bomb squad truck was called to the two-story building at Sheridan Street and Boston Avenue.

[Updated 4:19 a.m. ET] Faisal Shahzad is believed to be the person who drove the sports  utility vehicle into Times Square, a law enforcement official said.

The  Nissan Pathfinder had its Vehicle Identification Number removed from the dashboard. Police climbed under the SUV and retrieved the VIN from  the bottom of its engine block. This, said the official, led  investigators to the registered owner of the vehicle and then to Shahzad  who purchased the SUV.

Another law enforcement source  said Shahzad is claiming he acted alone in the incident.

[Updated 1:46 a.m.] A U.S. citizen has been arrested in Times Square bombing probe, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced early Tuesday.  Faisal Shahzad was arrested at JFK airport in New York as he prepared to board a flight to Dubai, Holder said.

[Updated 12:39 a.m.] An arrest has been made in a failed attempt to set off a car bomb in New York's Times Square over the weekend, a law enforcement official told CNN early Tuesday.

[Updated 9:18 p.m.] CNN has learned the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) is considering the possibility that the incident in Times Square was more than just a lone wolf and that there is a connection to Pakistan according to a source familiar with the investigation.

Investigators believe this was an intended terrorist attack to set off explosives in Times Square—that the individuals intended for the tanks to explode but didn’t have the expertise to detonate it.

[Updated at 6:07 p.m] From CNN's Alan Chernoff: Former NYPD Bomb Squad member Kevin Barry says the bomb found in an SUV Saturday night in Times Square "had no known signature," meaning it was not constructed in a fashion used by known terror organizations. In particular, Barry refers to the fact that the bomb had two timers.

"It's the first device of this type in quite a while. So we have no signature yet. Were we to see two or three more of these in the area, or within the U.S. then we might say, 'Listen we have a new group and they have somebody that is building these for them,'” said Barry.

In addition to the timers, bomb designers may differ in “how they twist wires, how they solder them, how they connect batteries, what products they use,” he said. That leads him to believe this was the work of either an individual or a new organization.

Barry says he trained the lead bomb squad technician who handled Saturday's explosive and spoke with him this morning about his dismantling of the device.

He says it did not detonate because the igniter did not have enough energy to detonate the bomb. Instead of detonating, it deflagrated (burned rapidly), Barry said. That would be consistent with the explosions, flames and smoke inside of the SUV that eyewitnesses described.

Barry is now on the Board of Advisors with the International Association of Bomb Technicians and Investigators.

[Updated at 6:02 p.m.]

[Updated at 4:36 p.m.] The sport-utility vehicle used in the unsuccessful Times Square bomb plot was sold three weeks ago in a cash deal with no paperwork exchanged, a law enforcement source with knowledge of the investigation said Monday.

A seller in Connecticut put the Nissan Pathfinder up for sale through the online classified ad site Craigslist and sold it to a buyer who paid $1,800 for the vehicle, the source told CNN. The $1,800 deal was closed at a Connecticut shopping mall, where the buyer handed over the money and drove off, the source said.

In the heart of midtown Manhattan on Saturday night, the Pathfinder was found packed with propane tanks, gasoline and fertilizer that had failed to explode when someone attempted to detonate it. The registered owner of the Pathfinder is not a suspect in the bombing attempt, New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told CNN earlier Monday.

[Updated at 10:10 a.m.] A U.S. official also told CNN it would be "surprising" if the group was behind the attack in New York. The official cannot be identified because of the sensitivity of the information, but is directly aware of the latest U.S. understanding of the incident.

The group has never shown "trans-national capabilities" like other groups such as al Qaeda, but such a possibility is "not something one can rule out at this early stage." The official also said there was no intelligence information beforehand of a Pakistani Taliban operation.Attorney General Eric Holder said it's too early to characterize the investigation as involving terrorism, though he also said that "there is no doubt that the person who did this intended to spread terror."

Investigators have some "good leads," he said, though he declined to elaborate. He pledged that authorities would bring to justice the person or persons who are responsible.

[Updated at 8:29 a.m.] There is still no "credible evidence" that the Pakistani Taliban was responsible for the Times Square bomb incident, a senior U.S. military official told CNN on Monday.

'We assess the claim to be of low credibility," said the source, who emphasized that the investigation is in its early stages.

[Updated at 8:06 a.m.] Authorities looking for clues in the failed Times Square bombing attempt plan to release another video in the case, New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told CNN's American Morning Monday.Kelly said the person in the video "is seen, we believe, running north on Broadway."

He said the video was obtained from a tourist.

[Posted at 7:58 a.m.] A man spotted near the scene of a car bomb in Times Square could be a witness or may have been involved in the attempted attack, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Monday.

"He was seen leaving the scene... we would like to be able to identify him and speak to him," she told CNN's "American Morning."

Authorities released videotaped images of the man.

New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly has said the video shows a man acting in a "furtive" manner but that his actions "could be perfectly innocent."

It is "highly premature" to speculate about who's behind the incident, which prompted the closure of the area on a busy Saturday night, Napolitano said.

Sunday's Roundup: Reports on the Times Square car bomb scare

soundoff (137 Responses)
  1. R. Allen

    I guess all you people who spout your theories of totally illogical rhetoric need to revamp your thinking. Calm down and THINK!

    May 4, 2010 at 6:47 am | Report abuse |
  2. US Marine

    Shoot and kill.... Lets wake up america these people are out to kill us....

    May 4, 2010 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
  3. Rachel

    god bless america
    im glad the nypd
    were there to keep
    new york & times square
    safe <3

    May 4, 2010 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  4. enuf

    The man is a Pakistani-American who was allowed to become a citizen in April 2009. How the hell did that happen? Americans put up with a lot to go in & out of this country & these people just waltz in. I want to know how he got in this country from a known Pakistani Taliban infested area & why he was allowed to become a citizen. He's not the only one either. Go Arizona and every other border state that is working to keep illegal aliens out of this country....maybe Homeland Security and NIS should take a page out of their book. Now that would be "funny."

    May 4, 2010 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  5. enuf those who are criticizing CNN and other news media for AIDING and ABETTING terroism in this country.....good on you....don't forget to metion that they have just informed any terrorists about where to find VIN numbers on cars, just in case they didn't know before hand. Thanks CNN & you other news media that can't seem to help about needing a wake up call!!

    May 4, 2010 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  6. concerned citizen

    Why is it so necessary for reporters to blindly report ALL the information, particularly when it comes to terrorist attacks? Certainly CNN reporters KNOW that their articles are read by terrorists EVERYWHERE. So why does the ordinary US citizen need to have every last detail on how exactly the terrorists failed? We DON'T. So stop giving the terrorists good information they can use for the next one, just so some 'reporter' can brag about what a good 'scoop' they got. While one can easily use the much abused 'freedom of speech' argument, there should also be a requirement to use common sense when reporting. And don't use the 'well, they could find that anywhere' excuse. They find it on CNN, which is easily accessible even in the dark caves of Pakistan/Afghanistan. For example: Yes, many people may know that the serial/VIN of a vehicle is identified in two places. But OBVIOUSLY, these terrorists didn't. NOW they and their friends will make sure not to make that mistake again, because of your reporting ( [4MAY Update 4:19 a.m. ET]. Did the public REALLY need to know how the police found this out....or couldn't you have just said "Police were able to trace the vehicle" as opposed to exactly how they traced it. This information is not 'need to know' info for the average citizen, so don't report it. It is 'need to know' for the average terrorist, and the average criminal for that matter. It almost appears as if some reporters want to assist future planners because another attack would be such a 'good scoop'. CNN (and all media) should take more responsibility in not releasing EVERY single detail that is reported to them – particularly when it comes to terrorist attacks. And using the "well, an official told us' excuse is not good enough either, because you know, as well as most of us – that many 'officials' make ignorant comments and release too much information as well. That's my two cents, and I sincerely hope the next terrorist attack that occurs here or elsewhere was not helped by any unnecessary reporting on CNN (or other 'respected' media companies).

    May 4, 2010 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  7. John

    Must of been an leftist atheist in the democratic party

    May 4, 2010 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  8. concerned citizen

    ...And in response to comment 114 above....Dianna, if that's your real name, why do you need to know the answer to those questions? Sure, it may be 'interesting' to know. But how is it going to affect your life by knowing that information (unless you're a chemical engineer...or something else related to knowing about explosives. Did it ever occur to you that public discussion about such things as chemical make up of explosives, and resulting smoke – could assist planners who were familiar with this attack, and would also like to know – yes, what did cause the smoke to occur – did I add too much nitro, or fertilizer. Dianna, these are things YOU don't need to know – let the professionals investigating this matter know. Discussing this in a public platform helps in releasing unimportant, virtually useless info to the public. But certainly would be useful to the terrorists monitoring this attack to help their future planning. Don't ask questions you don't need the answers to particularly when it comes to national security or terrorist attacks. You encourage 'too much info' reporting from the media, while neglecting how the answers to your questions could assist a terrorist cell. Ask yourself – do I really need to know this, or would it be better to just let the professionals discuss this amongst themselves, and NOT in a public forum.

    May 4, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  9. partharoy

    The bottomline: All roads of terrorism lead to PAKISTAN. This is the country which the US calls an ally, has paid about 10 billion dollars in the past five years for its so called cooperation "to fight terrorism", and still shielding it from its true color of nefarious designs to cause havoc in Mumbai (India) in Nov 2008. Pakistan is the country where the US journalist Daniel pearl was murdered by the Al Qaeda elements, yet the US tries to downplay the matter. pakistan is the country where London bombers were trained and inspired. Pakistan is the place from where money was wired to 9-11 terrorists. Check the 9-11 commission report – and Pakistan has been mentioned 19 times. Dig further deep, and one will find the root cause of all these terrorist activities – it is the Pakistani army and intel agency people's fingerprints everywhere. Wake up. The sooner the Pakistani army is disbanded and Pakistan is broken into four pieces, the better will it be for the rest of the world.

    May 4, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  10. countess

    It never ceases to amaze me when anti-tea patriots accuse TP's of creating havoc etc.
    The only ones at the tea party I went to that was TRYING to cause trouble was a
    welfare? mom with 2 signs "I am a racist" "I am a bigot". Tea P's went up to her and told
    her she was the only racist there. Then the crowd boo'ed HER. TP's are not the fearful,
    the anti's appear to be skeert tho!

    May 4, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  11. James Sullivan

    Even though people may consider the immigration bill in Arizona to be harsh; that is unfortunate. Now it it sttime for the Federal and State governments to start rethinking immigraation in general. Many companies in NY and other staes hire those from foreign cultures. This policy should be stopped, especially when considdering immigrants from nations who will hurt us. This nation is a nation of immigrants, but the population exceed the number of jobs. In addition, only those who seek to enter into the country for political freedom should be the only ones allowwed. We cannot be the refuge for the entire world. In addition, American interests should only have to do with the protection of Americans and not oil or land in foreign countries

    May 5, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jaxx325

    i think this "terrorist" is pretty freakin retarded... anyone can make a bomb out of miracle-gro, and gas..... but it takes someone with an I.Q. of at least 50 to ignite it. besides he put the car in a wrong place... if he wanted to hurt/kill someone he would have put some explosives in the drain-off hole in the middle of the street and then put the car over it. the pressure would launch the car in the air because of the explosion and impact. the dubree would scatter around the street and if timed right with the wind direction it would blow some of the dubrees into some of the close by shops... liteing them on fire. but i have to say hes not the sharpest tool in the shed.

    May 12, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Rob Cook

    i think they just wants to make aware to US people that still they can damage after world biggest attack on the WTC. after all the securities if they can come & place the bomb in car at a place like time square from where all the world are attached with the current affairs of the activity of the world, so it make us directly to the point is that. they just want to to set a big challenge against US Government.

    Rob Cook

    July 1, 2010 at 12:42 am | Report abuse |
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    I do not imagine it really includes something to do with a recollection branches or the reader by itself mainly because in the event the Universal series bus is actually plugged in your sticks, reader in addition to device usually do the job equally it will however whether it is unplugged the problem is once more obvious. sewa mobil murah surabaya

    May 26, 2012 at 2:33 am | Report abuse |
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