NEW YORK (AP) — New video footage of a suspected bomber riding a blue bicycle was offered Tuesday along with a $65,000 award in an effort to generate leads in the 2008 blast at the military recruitment station in Times Square.
Photos and video will be displayed on digital billboards throughout the Northeast, including in Times Square, while the FBI and New York Police Department are offering up to $65,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of anyone responsible for the March 6, 2008, attack, authorities said.
No one was injured in the early morning bombing at the U.S. Armed Forces Recruiting Station. Authorities said the explosive device was built using an ammunition can commonly found on battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Officials say the suspect and possible accomplices may be connected to earlier unsolved bombings at the British and Mexican consulates.
“Someone, somewhere, knows something about a bomber who’s still on the run,” said George Venizelos, head of the FBI’s New York office. “Today we’re asking for the public’s assistance in finding those responsible and encouraging the public to look closely at these photos and video, which could be the key to breaking the case.”
Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said in a release issued by the FBI and the police department: “While published reports have repeatedly cited the early morning time of the attack and the lack of casualties, the fact is the bomber narrowly missed killing or injuring passers-by who can be seen clearly in the vicinity, moments before the blast.”
Videos of the suspect in a gray sweatshirt and pants of an unknown color were not previously viewed by the public, authorities said, and a picture of the bomb will be used to jog the memories of anyone who might know something. The videos are grainy, and the bicyclist is a tiny figure in most of them. Even the bomber’s gender is unclear.
The suspect rode a blue Ross bicycle, got off his bike, placed a bomb at the station, lit a fuse and fled on the bike, authorities said.
According to the release, the suspect appeared to be working alone but might have had a lookout or surveillance team of as many as five other individuals in Times Square at the time of the attack. The bicycle was recovered after the attack in a dumpster near Madison Avenue and 38th Street.
The appeal for help comes several weeks after a Brooklyn man was jailed for refusing to testify before a grand jury apparently looking into the Times Square bombing. The man’s lawyer has said he knew nothing of the attack but objected to a government probe of a political movement he has participated in.
In a separate case, Faisal Shahzad is serving a life sentence after admitting he built a car bomb he left in Times Square in May 2010 to avenge U.S. military intervention in Muslim countries. The bomb malfunctioned.
Video footage of bomb suspect: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2krOdqRpyOs