At first officials thought it was an industrial accident, but later not so as police are looking for a suspect in a blast outside a California synagogue and community center late last week.
A hunk of concrete and large pipe that flew some 25 feet into the air and blasted through the roof of a guest house at Chabad House Lubavitch of Santa Monica, CA, Santa Monica police Sgt. Jay Trisler said.
“The device appeared to have been deliberately constructed,” Trisler said.
Authorities said they knew of no motive behind the explosion, and Jewish groups said they did not believe anti-Semitism was necessarily behind it.
Authorities initially believed a worker was trying to remove the pipe from concrete when a chemical mixture created pressure and launched the 4-foot-long pipe and plug of concrete into the air.
The explosion shattered windows, punched a hole in the synagogue, and sent the pipe ricocheting into a neighboring house. There were no injuries.
Police have a suspect in the case.