Officials in Colorado have confirmed that an explosion outside a Colorado NAACP office Tuesday morning was deliberate — an action that mirrors the terroristic bombings of the Jim Crow era to discourage, harm, and instill fear in black communities.
The “improvised explosive device” was detonated against the exterior wall of the building, which houses the headquarters of the Colorado Springs, Colorado NAACP, according to a statement by the FBI. A gasoline can was also placed by the bomb, but did not ignite as a result of the explosion.
No one was killed or injured, FBI spokeswoman Amy Sanders said. The building, which also houses a barbershop, and the sidewalk did sustain damage, however.
The FBI statement adds that a “potential person of interest in this investigation is a Caucasian male, approximately 40 years of age, and balding. He may be driving a 2000 or older model dirty, white pick-up truck with paneling, a dark colored bed liner, open tailgate, and a missing or covered license plate.”
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is also investigating the case.
Police have not identified a motive or confirmed that the explosion was a threat, but bombings during the Civil Rights era were a common terrorism tactic. In 1963, the Birmingham, Alabama bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church left four black children dead, all girls, and a nation divided.