INDIANAPOLIS – Officers with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department’s bomb squad have activated a number of sweeps in wake of bombings Saturday night in New York City and New Jersey.
“Right now we’re looking at what the motivations were, what ties internationally possibly there may have been,” IMPD Commander Ted Fries said Monday.
The IMPD bomb squad conducted numerous unannounced sweeps Sunday at undisclosed locations across the city. Officials said no suspicious activity or devises were detected, characterizing the sweeps as precautionary as opposed to any intelligence pointing toward a threat in Indianapolis.
“We act upon our intelligence,” Fries said. “And we have a very robust Intel unit here in Indianapolis and work with our state, local and federal partners.”
Gov. Mike Pence was briefed at the governor’s mansion Monday morning before heading to Iowa to campaign for the presidential election.
“There is no higher priority than the safety and security of our citizens, and Hoosiers should feel confident that the state of Indiana is taking all appropriate steps to keep Hoosiers safe,” Pence said in a prepared statement.
IMPD said it has conducted more than 600 sweeps this year with its bomb squad, a majority of which are out of the public’s eye. Officials said they have responded about 75 times to what they would consider a true ‘suspicious package’ type situation.
“Business is okay,” IMPD Lt. Ron Humber said, the bomb squad commander. “Things like what happened over the weekend, all it does it make the requests for us more frequent.”
The city also relies on a network of cameras, which helped officials in New York City quickly identify and arrest a suspect. Yet officials acknowledge, like in New York, intelligence can oftentimes be quiet before an attack.
FBI officials have told FOX59 agents are monitoring a number of people in Indiana who have shown signs of homegrown violent extremism.
“One individual with an agenda or some type of warped thinking can perpetrate an act,” Fries aid. “And you’re vulnerable. We’ve seen that across the country.”
Indiana Homeland Security officials ask residents if they see something suspicious to report the activity to the Indiana Intelligence Fusion Center by calling 1-877-226-1026 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.