More On The OU Bomber

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Long time readers may remember my OU Bomber series of posts in which I created a real-time timeline as events unfolded. My whole series of posts can be found here.

A quick rundown on the story from an article last October:

CBN.com ? OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma – Has terrorism returned to the Oklahoma City area? That is what folks in Norman have been asking, ever since a 21-year-old student at the University of Oklahoma killed himself in what some are calling an attempted homicide bombing.

On Saturday, October 1, engineering major Joel Hinrichs detonated a homemade bomb near Memorial Stadium, where 84,000 fans were watching the hometown Sooners take on Kansas State.

That was just a hundred yards from a newly replaced bench ? it was there, just before halftime, that a powerful explosion ripped through the entire area, taking Hinrichs with it.

From the outset, both the FBI and University of Oklahoma President David Boren have insisted that Hinrichs acted alone. They say his death was a random suicide, carried out by a troubled young man, and that Hinrichs had no intention of hurting anyone but himself. But others who have followed the case closely are not so sure.

Mark Tapscott of the Heritage Foundation remarked, ?There are about 30,000 suicides in America?unfortunately?every year. And you can go back a decade, and you will not find a single one of those suicides who blew themself up in proximity, close proximity, to 84,000 people at a football game.?

Tapscott and other online bloggers have questioned Hinrichs? true intentions. They point to his Pakistani Muslim roommate and the location of his apartment?just one block from the Norman Mosque.

It is the same mosque that convicted 9/11 plotter Zacarias Moussaoui attended when he lived in Norman. As for Hinrichs, a spokesman for the mosque told us he had never seen him there.

Now today there is a front page article in the local paper describing how a police bomb expert for the local PD stated he did not believe Hinrich meant to commit suicide: (h/t Michelle Malkin who got it from Tapscott’s Copy Desk)

NORMAN – A Norman police bomb expert said Tuesday he does not believe University of Oklahoma student Joel Henry Hinrichs III committed suicide by blowing himself up outside a packed football stadium.
“I believe he accidentally blew himself up,” Sgt. George Mauldin said.

Mauldin said Hinrichs, 21, an engineering student, had two to three pounds of triacetone triperoxide, commonly known as TATP, in a backpack in his lap when it exploded Oct. 1.

When asked if he believed Hinrichs meant to enter the stadium with the explosives, Mauldin replied, “I don’t believe he intended for an explosion to occur at that spot (on the park bench).”

“Some of us will forever wonder what he (Hinrichs) was doing at that time, at that place,” Police Chief Phil Cotten said.

Hinrichs was sitting on a park bench 173 yards from the OU stadium during the second quarter of OU’s night game against Kansas State when the TATP inside his backpack detonated.

“Someone saw him fiddling with it (the backpack) shortly before the explosion occurred. I think he got cocky, and it went off,” Mauldin said.

Mauldin and Cotten briefed Norman City Council members about the explosion and their agency’s investigation in a conference before Tuesday night’s council meeting.

The FBI has said in the past its investigation did not uncover any links between the student and terrorist organizations. They have said they may never know whether the student wanted to get inside the stadium.

The student’s father, Joel Hinrichs Jr., has said his son intended to kill only himself.

Mauldin, head of the Norman bomb unit, said investigators detonated at the scene the remains of Hinrichs’ backpack, which contained wires, a battery and a circuit board.

Graphic photos of Hinrichs’ headless body still upright on the park bench next to a tattered backpack were shown to the council.

Mauldin said investigators found “quite a bit more” explosive material inside Hinrichs’ Parkview apartment on Sooner Drive, southeast of Lindsey Street and Stinson Drive.

A pint-size Tupperware container on a counter was filled with TATP Hinrichs had manufactured, Mauldin said.

A pill bottle packed with TATP with a fuse stuck in it was found behind a computer, he said.

The FBI reported in November that 0.4 pound of TATP was found inside Hinrichs’ apartment. TATP is the most unstable explosive known and is “the explosive of choice” in the Middle East, Mauldin said. “It is so volatile, even a small amount on the tip of a finger will explode if it comes within 8 inches of a match,” Mauldin said.

Investigators also found a quantity of acetone and hydrogen, components necessary for manufacturing TATP, inside the student’s apartment.

“We found evidence of him compressing TATP, which is foolhardy, given its properties,” Mauldin said.

Making TATP is a seven-step process, Mauldin said, with the substance becoming explosive after three steps.

Bomb squad officers used great care in removing the material from Hinrichs’ apartment for fear it would explode, Mauldin said.

“And we wanted to get it out of there quickly. The longer TATP sits, the more likely (it is) to explode spontaneously,” he said.

Officers also removed “a lot” of military rounds, many of them live, and pieces of metal from the student’s apartment, Mauldin said.

Metal fragments often are added to explosives to make them more deadly, he said.

The explosives Hinrichs had outside the stadium were pure, with no fragmentation added, Mauldin said.

However, he said, the student kept careful notes of experimentation with explosives in the weeks leading up to the Oct. 1 blast.

Notes indicated Hinrichs experimented with adding fragmentation to explosives as if “he were trying to make a damaging product,” Mauldin said.

Most of Hinrichs’ experiments occurred at Red Rock Canyon, according to the notes.

So this kid decided he was going to make a fragmentation bomb to commit suicide?

Ok, lets look at the facts here:

  • Roommate was a Pakistani
  • Hinrich had been seen at the local Mosque, same Mosque that the 20th hijacker, Zacarias Moussaoui, attended.
  • Hinrich attempted to buy a large amount of Ammonium Nitrate from a local feed store days earlier
  • Evidence that Hinrich was attempting to make a Fragmentation bomb, which is mainly used by suicide bombers to kill other people.
  • It has been reported but not confirmed that Hinrich attempted to get into the stadium twice but was turned away
  • Radical Muslim material was found in his apartment

And now add the fact this bomb expert believes he did not intend to detonate the bomb where he did and you have the making of a classic suicide bomber.

UPDATE

Mark Tapscott from Tapscott’s Copy Desk interviewed a spokesperson from the local FBI office in Oklahoma:

Gary Johnson, a spokesman for the Oklahoma City office of the FBI, dismissed comments published today by The Daily Oklahoman by Norman Police Sergeant George Mauldin that OU Suicide Bomber Joel Hinrichs killed himself “accidentally” and did not intend the bomb he was carrying to detonate when it did.

“That’s just an individual’s opinion,” Johnson said in an interview with Tapscott’s Copy Desk. Johnson said the FBI stands by its view that Hinrichs was not involved in any terrorist activities.

What a shocker. The FBI sticking to their story and keeping their heads in the sand.

As always Mark is ahead of the curve on this one, he always seems to be the first to get the information out on this case.

Other’s Blogging:


And now add the fact this bomb expert believes he did not intend to detonate the bomb where he did and you have the making of a classic suicide bomber.

Curt served in the Marine Corps for four years and has been a law enforcement officer in Los Angeles for the last 26 years.

6 Responses to “More On The OU Bomber”

  1. 2

    gretchen allen

    im just saying after all the mud and dirt i have been dragged through…someone needs to tell a truth…cause as we claim in this great godly state we love bush,guns,and freedoms…well i only agree on freedoms…but for gods sake if you people really follow god be honest…dont make me be embaressed to live in this hypocritical place,,,make me proud to call this my home…politicians…david boren…be honest

  2. 3

    docdave

    I really hate to say this but once again our FBI seems to be doing what it does best, lying and covering up. e.g. Davidians, Oklahoma City, TWA800. I’m sure that you all can think of some more cases.

  3. 4

    Christine

    We also need to keep in mind what else we are having problems with regarding universities these days. They are not exactly on our side regarding the WOT.

  4. 5

    Rick Moran

    It is a mystery to me why the FBI is downplaying this. I suspect the reason the media isn’t making much of it is because both the OU Administration and the FBI have dismissed it as a suicide.

    Are the Feds worried of starting a panic? Better I think that we be informed of something like this than remain in the dark. It apparently isn’t the only case of on campus jihadism which means that there may be a deliberate effort to hide the fact that our universities have some people who could either be terrorists or terrorists in waiting.

  5. 6

    Anonymous

    Tel-Chai Nation

    Hinrichs may not have intended to kill himself…

    The Oklahoman’s got another article on Joel Henry Hinrichs III (Hat tip: Mark Tapscott and Michelle Malkin), in which a member of the police bomb squad investigating the blowup outside the Norman stadium says that he believes Hinrichs did not intend ….

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