The F.B.I. says the device could have caused “multiple casualties.” Thankfully, it was found — and defused — before the march got underway.
In what feels like a callous affront to King’s legacy of non-violence, an improvised bomb was placed along the Martin Luther King Day parade route in downtown Spokane, Washington on Monday.
The suspicious backpack, which contained an improvised explosive device (IED) and two t-shirts, was found less than an hour before the festivities began. The march was re-routed and the bomb diffused.
Given the timing and the placement of the bomb, the F.B.I. believes the motive was political: “We’re certainly approaching it as a potential domestic terrorism event at this point,” said spokesman.“Whether the motive was racial or an individual was being targeted, it’s too soon to say.”
The agency is offering a $20,000 award for information leading to an arrest and conviction. (Via the Los Angeles Times)
(See TIME’s photo essay, ‘Martin Luther King in His Own Words.’)