$100,000 Reward Offered for Visalia Mail Bomber

September 17, 2009 6:02:42 PM PDT
Nearly a week and a half after a man was injured when he opened up an explosive package; federal investigators are offering a large reward, hoping it will lead to the arrest of a suspect.The reward is up to $100-thousand dollars. United States Postal Inspectors were in Visalia just for the day to follow up on some leads and announce the reward to the local media.

The owner of "Cal-Air" says he's not sure if this reward means investigators are closer, or further away, from finding a suspect.

Federal investigators are hoping a reward of up to $100-thousand dollars will encourage someone to come forward who knows details about why a bomb was sent to "Cal-Air" Cooling and Heating service in Visalia nearly a week and a half ago.

Renee Focht with the U.S. Postal Inspections Service said, "We have received several leads form the public here in Visalia and we want to thank them for those leads and we want to encourage them to keep calling in with information."

On September 8th "Cal-Air" employee, Aaron Mustin, told Action News he opened a package addressed to his father, who owns the business. It exploded and he suffered injuries to his arm, face and fingers.

Aaron's father told Action News his son is back to work and doing well. But he wonders if the reward means the investigation still lacks a lot of viable information to solve the case.

U.S. Postal Inspectors say they are making progress in their investigation but they still need more information.

Focht said, "These types of investigations are like puzzles ... we're still looking for a piece of the puzzle and we're asking the public to help with that."

Focht says the entire United States Dangerous Mail Investigation Team out of Los Angeles along with several investigators from the San Francisco office, are working on the case every day. They say it's a top priority and are working closely with the Visalia Police Department.

Sgt. Steve Phillips said, "Our violent crime bureau is working with the postal inspectors sometimes they're here sometimes they're not as far as postal inspectors but there's always a detective on scene working the investigation."

The U.S. Postal Inspections Services says it is working with the United States Attorney's Office on prosecuting the case.

Authorities still aren't giving any details as to a motive for sending the bomb but say when someone mails a bomb, it's usually meant to go to a specific target.

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