Houses evacuated in connection to DES explosion investigation - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Houses evacuated in connection to DES explosion investigation

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Casa Grande explosion Casa Grande explosion
Coolidge neighborhood evacuated Coolidge neighborhood evacuated
COOLIDGE, Ariz. -

FBI agents, sheriff's deputies and members of the bomb squad searched a home Friday night -- at the home of the man who may have bombed the Social Security office in Casa Grande.

That man may be responsible for the explosion at the Casa Grande building, but the FBI can neither confirm nor deny that anyone was taken into custody.

Someone threw something out of a car window at the office Friday morning, causing a fire to start just before 8:30 a.m. There was minimal damage to the building -- the entry door was blackened and charred -- but no one was hurt.

Police and firefighters were the first to arrive on the scene, but soon after, federal agents joined the investigation.

Dozens of homes in the Martin Valley community in Coolidge were evacuated as a precaution Friday night while the search warrant was served.

We talked to Jerry Vining, who lives near by the home that was searched.

"They started knocking on everyone's door telling us we had to leave. They said the guy had thrown a homemade explosive device in Casa Grande and they needed to get everyone out of the neighborhood for precaution," said Vining.

"They were talking to the guy in the cop car and then a whole bunch of unmarked Suburbans and sedans came and they started blocking the road.

"He wasn't a real friendly guy, you'd see him and wave at him and he would just act like he didn't see you. He was a real lonely guy, never saw anyone go to his house, always by himself.

"It kind of shocked me. To do something like that it's kind of radical, I don't know why he would do something like but I always took caution. If my wife left early for work I'd tell her, if you see him come get me. His mysterious demeanor made you cautious about him the whole time.

"I can understand where law enforcement is coming from because if he did what they say he did at DES office, there's a possibility there's more stuff in his house. I don't know how far he'd be with it or how destructive the guy would be," said Vining.

The name of the possible suspect is not available. Again, the FBI would not confirm an arrest.

The motive for the attack is unknown.

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