Boston and federal authorities are investigating whether a package that supposedly detonated at Northeastern University Tuesday evening might have been staged by the employee who opened it and was injured, a law enforcement source told Fox News.
There were no signs of an explosion at the scene or on the case in which the alleged device was being carried the source said.
Another source told The Associated Press that investigators identified inconsistencies in the employee’s statement and became skeptical because his injuries did not match wounds typically consistent with an explosion.
The Northeastern staff member said late Tuesday the hard plastic case exploded at Holmes Hall, causing minor injuries, according to authorities.
Officials said the “Pelican-style” case contained a rambling note that railed against virtual reality and also referenced Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
The first law enforcement source told Fox News that the victim was seen on video walking with the pelican case in which the alleged device was being carried and is suspected of having written the note himself.
Holmes Hall is home to the university’s Immersive Media Labs, which according to its website includes technologies for design, development, and exploration of virtual worlds.
Fox News has reached out to the FBI seeking more information in this case.
Boston police told Fox News the case “remains an active and ongoing investigation, and we are unable to provide further information beyond our press release that was issued last night.”
Northeastern said Wednesday that the campus is “safe and secure.”
Classes, research, and all other campus activities resumed Wednesday. Counseling and other support services were made available for students, faculty, and staff.
The package delivered to Holmes Hall detonated just after 7 p.m. Tuesday when a staff member opened it, the university said. The staff member, a 45-year-old man, was taken to the hospital with minor injuries to his hand, police said. His identity has not been released.
The Boston Police Bomb Squad neutralized a second package near the city’s Museum of Fine Arts, which is near Northeastern’s campus.
Northeastern is a private university in downtown Boston with about 16,000 undergraduate students.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.