Devices explode at Florida mall

Ruben Ruiz
January 23, 2018

Firefighters responded to reports of an explosion at the mall on 451 Eagle Ridge Drive around 5:20 p.m.

Police then found what they believe to be a detonated device. "People here shopping, just enjoying a Sunday afternoon with their family, and literally, boom", deputy police chief Troy Schulze told reporters a few hours after the incident, as officers formed a perimeter around the store behind him.

About 100 people were evacuated from inside the mall.

Schulze stated to the reports that, "The authorities found backpack or book bag that contained five or six other IEDs that were not detonated".

The area where the devices exploded is away from customers and generally only used by employees.

A third suspicious item was discovered near a movie theater, he said, but the state fire marshal's office determined that it was harmless, NBC News reported.

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Schulze would not speculate on a motive or who might've planted the devices.

There was no indication that this was an act of terrorism, officials said.

"We're a family-oriented community, this is a family-oriented mall". K9 units searched the mall on Sunday evening and the Federal Bureau of Investigation was notified.

The federal officials say the flares ignited inside one of the mall hallways, creating a large amount of smoke, and a backpack was located at the scene.

Persons of interest at this time are described as: 1) White male, middle aged, heavy/stocky build, wearing a grey shirt and grey hat.

Other reports by GizPress

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