Mayor, CPD Say 'No Credible Threat' to Chicago After Apparent Explosive Sent to Obama in DC - NBC Chicago

Mayor, CPD Say 'No Credible Threat' to Chicago After Apparent Explosive Sent to Obama in DC

Five "potential explosive devices" were sent to Hillary Clinton, former President Obama, billionaire George Soros, ex-Attorney General Eric Holder and CNN at NYC's Time Warner Center

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Investigation on Suspicious Packages Sent to Democrats, CNN Continues

    Chicago authorities say there is no credible threat in the city or near former President Barack Obama's South Side home in wake of "potential explosive devices" mailed along the East Coast Wednesday. NBC 5's Patrick Fazio has the latest.

     

    (Published Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018)

    What to Know

    • Officials are investigating a series of apparent explosive devices sent to Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, George Soros, CNN and Eric Holder

    • Five parcels had a return address linking to a high-profile Democratic party member; at least one of them also had a white powder envelope

    • The flurry of incidents come less than 48 hours after bomb was planted in mailbox at billionaire philanthropist Soros' NY home

    Chicago authorities say there is no credible threat in the city or near former President Barack Obama's South Side home in wake of "potential explosive devices" mailed along the East Coast Wednesday. 

    "There’s nothing credible that you have to worry about or be concerned from a Chicago perspective," Mayor Rahm Emanuel said at a press conference for an unrelated event. "There’s nothing anywhere, in any part of our knowledge, anything to be worried about in the city of Chicago."

    Chcago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson echoed the mayor's comments saying the department is in contact with the Secret Service but there were "no credible threats to Chicago." 

    "The daily security responsibilities for the Obama family are under the US Secret Service," CPD said in a statement. "While there are no specific threats to Chicago, we are in real time communication with the Secret Service and are monitoring these investigations."

    Five "potential explosive devices" were sent to Hillary Clinton, Obama, billionaire George Soros, ex-Attorney General Eric Holder and CNN at NYC's Time Warner Center Wednesday. The devices are thought to be linked, law enforcement sources say -- and officials are looking into whether one addressed to California Rep. Maxine Waters in Washington, D.C., has a similar signature. 

    Two of the five devices -- one addressed to Clinton's Chappaqua home, one to Obama in Washington, D.C. -- were intercepted by the U.S. Secret Service. Both were discovered at off-site locations and neither the former secretary of state nor former president were ever at risk, officials said. 

    Law enforcement officials say all of the five linked parcels -- those addressed to Clinton, Obama, Soros, Brennan and Holder -- had a manila outer packaging and the devices had stamps on them. The devices appear to be working explosives, sources say, but final analysis is pending further testing. 

    The signature is nearly the same on those five packages and all listed the return address as one belonging to ex-Democratic National Committee chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz. There is no suggestion Schultz had any involvement, law enforcement officials say. 

    At the Manhattan briefing, an FBI representative with the Joint Terrorism Task Force said the devices assessed thus far appeared to be pipe bombs. 

    The Secret Service says it recovered the Clinton package, addressed to her home in Chappaqua, late Tuesday. She was not there at the time, though former President Bill Clinton was in the residence. The parcel addressed to Obama in Washington, D.C., was intercepted early Wednesday. 

    Later Wednesday, at a campaign event in Coral Gables, Florida, Hillary Clinton thanked everyone for their support.

    "We are fine, thanks to the men and women of the Secret Service who intercepted the package addressed to us long before it made its way to our home," Clinton said. "But it is a troubling time, isn’t it, and it’s a time of deep divisions and we have to do everything we can to bring out country together."

    Secret Service says it has initiated a "full scope criminal investigation that will leverage all available federal, state, and local resources to determine the source of the packages and identify those responsible."

    "The packages were immediately identified during routine mail screening procedures as potential explosive devices and were appropriately handled as such," Secret Service said in a statement. "Both packages were intercepted prior to being delivered to their intended location. The protectees did not receive the packages nor were they at risk of receiving them." 

    President Doanld Trump was briefed on the situation and said in remarks from the White House Wednesday afternoon "the safety of the American people is my highest and absolute priority."

    "We will spare no resources or expense in this effort," he said. "I just want to tell you in these times, we have to unify, we have to come together and send one very clear, strong, unmistakable message that acts or threats of political violence of any kind have no place in the United States of America."

    Vice President Mike Pence took to Twitter to condemn the "cowardly" and "despicable" acts and to thank the Secret Service and FBI for their response. President Donald Trump did not issue a statement of his own but did retweet Pence roughly 50 minutes later and added "I agree wholeheartedly!"

    In D.C., the mayor and police chief assured the public that local and federal officials would handle the threats.

    “We will not let this terroristic behavior interrupt our lives,” Police Chief Peter Newsham said at a news conference.

    CNN officials said they checked bureaus around the world "out of a complete abundance of caution and found no additional threats.

    "We are working with authorities to determine the severity of the situation," CNN chief Jeff Zucker said in an email to employees. 

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