Car Explosion Kills Three Men in Pennsylvania, Officials Say

Car Explosion Kills Three Men in Pennsylvania, Officials Say
3 dead after a car exploded in Pennsylvania in a criminal incident
Police join members of the ATF and the FBI as they investigate North Hall Street in Allentown, Pa., Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, after a fiery car explosion rocked the neighborhood on Saturday.

A car exploded on a downtown street in what authorities called a “criminal incident,” leaving three people dead and leading to a shelter-in-place order for nearby residents and an investigation by federal, state and local authorities.

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The blast in Allentown, Pa. that occurred at about 9:30 p.m. Saturday left three males dead, Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim said Sunday afternoon. Autopsies were planned Monday, and Grim said the names of the males would be released once their identities are confirmed and their families are notified.

It’s not clear so far how or why the explosion happened. The FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) went to the scene to investigate the explosion. Officers from multiple police departments flocked to Allentown after the incident. 

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is leading the investigation along with the FBI, state police, and city and county authorities. Officials said the blast was believed to have been an isolated incident with no ongoing threat to the public.

Allentown Police have widened the crime scene area. Command post situated near the PPL Center at 7th & Linden. Dozens of law enforcement officials on scene investigating. Red Cross assisting. No update yet on victims. @FOX29phillypic.twitter.com/IrmRvflaKq

“We know there’s been a criminal incident,” District Attorney James Martin told reporters at Sunday’s news conference. “We have a high degree of confidence that the perpetrator was probably killed in the incident.”

Debris from the car, which reportedly was split in half after the blast, was reportedly strewn around the whole block on Sunday. The explosion was felt far beyond the area and was heard throughout the town, local newspaper the Morning Call reported.

Car explosion in Pennsylvania leaves three men dead

Authorities released no information about the possible cause of the blast, but Martin said “loads of us in law enforcement” are confident “this was A. an isolated incident and B. there’s no continuing threat.”

3 Dead After Car Explosion on Street in Isolated Incident

Resident Carlos Perodin told The Morning Call of Allentown that he was watching a movie with his wife when he heard a thunderous explosion and went to the scene.

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Another witness to the aftermath of the explosion, Stephanie Connelly, told The Morning Call that she saw body parts strewn across the street.

The blast in Allentown that occurred at about 9:30 p.m. Saturday left three males dead, Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim said Sunday afternoon. Autopsies were planned Monday, and Grim said the names of the males would be released once their identities are confirmed and their families are notified.

“This is real life and I’m shaking and freaking out while I’m running,” she said.

The FBI had earlier said it was working with other agencies and “to assess the situation and determine the cause, with public safety the bureau’s highest priority.” Officials asked anyone who witnessed the blast or had information about it to contact investigators.

Mystery surrounds deadly car explosion; suspect likely among the dead

A bus station was turned into a makeshift command centre with armoured vehicles, dozens of police cruisers, mobile command units and even portable bathrooms, the paper reported. Several portable tents were also erected for evidence processing.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is leading the investigation along with the FBI, state police, and city and county authorities. Officials said the blast was believed to have been an isolated incident with no ongoing threat to the public.

Residents were asked to avoid the area, and people who live nearby were asked to shelter in place. A shelter was set up at an elementary school.

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FBI investigating after car explosion kills 1 on city street in Pennsylvania

The FBI had earlier said it was working with other agencies and “to assess the situation and determine the cause, with public safety the bureau’s highest priority.” Officials asked anyone who witnessed the blast or had information about it to contact investigators.

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Federal and local authorities investigate along North Hall Street in Allentown, Pa., Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, after a fiery car explosion rocked the neighborhood on Saturday night. Police confirmed several fatalities. (Harry Fisher/The Morning Call via AP)

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ALLENTOWN, Pa. – A car explosion that rocked downtown Allentown left three males dead, including the likely perpetrator, officials said Sunday as federal authorities who are leading the investigation looked ahead to autopsies.

We know theres been a criminal incident, District Attorney James Martin told reporters at a news conference Sunday. We have a high degree of confidence that the perpetrator was probably killed in the incident.

Authorities released no information about the possible cause of Saturday nights blast, including whether it was a bomb, but Martin said, Loads of us in law enforcement are confident this was A. an isolated incident and B. theres no continuing threat.

Authorities are seeking the publics help in getting clues and asked anyone with information to call the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, which is leading the investigation.

The blast occurred a block from the PPL Center sports arena and two blocks from the popular Hamilton Street dining area in Allentown, a city of about 120,000 about 60 miles (95 kilometres) northwest of Philadelphia. The block where it occurred is a mixture of residences and small businesses, including a restaurant and a bar.

Resident Carlos Perodin told The Morning Call of Allentown that he was watching a movie with his wife when he heard a thunderous explosion and went to the scene.

Another witness to the aftermath of the explosion, Stephanie Connelly, told The Morning Call that she saw body parts strewn across the street.

Autopsies were planned Monday on the three males found dead after the 9:30 p.m. explosion, Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim said Sunday afternoon. Grim said he would probably be able to release the names Monday once their identities are confirmed and their families are notified.

Authorities swarmed the area after the explosion. A bus station was turned into a makeshift command centre with armoured vehicles, dozens of police cruisers, mobile command units and even portable bathrooms, the paper reported. Several portable tents were also erected for evidence processing.

Residents were asked to avoid the area, and people who live nearby were asked to shelter in place. A shelter was set up at an elementary school.

The FBI had earlier said it was working with other agencies and to assess the situation and determine the cause, with public safety the bureaus highest priority. Officials asked anyone who witnessed the blast or had information about it to contact investigators.