Explosion in Downtown Philadelphia Leaves Gay Man Injured in Possible Hate Crime
City police are investigating some type of an explosion in Center City that left a man injured on Tuesday morning.
Police confirm they were investigating a suspicious package on Pine Street when the explosion occurred, reports CBS Philadelphia.
Philly police officials tell CBS News the explosion was caused by some kind of device that the victim activated, and it came in a manila envelope.
Police are talking to the victim and his partner and looking at everything, including the possibility of this being a hate crime. Officials tell CBS News they do not believe this is related to terrorism.
“Preliminary information is that there was a package they believed to have contained some sort of medication. Now, it did explode, but at this time they don’t know whether or not this was an intentional explosion,” Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small said. “We don’t know whether this was a bomb mailed to the house in order to explode and do injuries, or whether this was just some sort of freak accident where something like an inhaler just exploded.”
Small said the explosion occurred inside the kitchen where a 62-year-old man lives.
“There’s some broken glass, there’s some damage to the range where you would cook, there’s some blood, but there’s not a lot of structural damage at all inside the property,” Small said.
The victim was transported to Jefferson Hospital. His condition is still unknown at this time.
The Philadelphia Police, Bomb Squad, the ATF and other agencies continue to investigate this incident, however there’s no threat to the surrounding area.
“All of the other mailed packages that we initially thought were suspicious have been cleared,” Small said. “There no thereat now of anything else exploding.”
The victim does receive medication through the mail regularly.
Investigators say, while it’s rare, inhalers have been known to accidentally explode.
A 36-year-old roommate does live with the victim. Police say he’s being questioned at this time.