. . . both on Matthew Stewart and the Ogden drug raid.
This one, from the Standard-Examiner is headlined “Suspect had a bomb,” and repeatedly, explicitly refers to a “bomb” that police detonated in Stewart’s closet. Meanwhile, this one, from the Salt Lake Tribune, quotes an ATF spokesman.
Earlier Monday, Brad Beyersdorf, public information officer for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, confirmed that bomb technicians detonated “explosive materials” or components found inside Stewart’s house Saturday. Beyersdorf did not specify what was found but said that “to characterize it as a bomb or device is not accurate at this time.”
Emphasis mine. The same article also quotes Stewart’s father on the “device:”
But Stewart’s father, Michael Stewart, told The Tribune he believes the chemicals found by police were used by his son to grow marijuana, which apparently spurred the Weber-Morgan Narcotics Strike Force to obtain the search warrant they attempted to execute Wednesday night on Stewart’s house at 3268 Jackson Ave. in Ogden.
Michael Stewart claims police “botched” the initial investigation into his son’s marijuana growing activities.
“It’s possible the authorities may have been relying on an informant who broke the law who was trespassing,” Michael Stewart said.
He did not specify why he believes that but said he has spoken with his son’s attorney, Randall Richards.
I got a little chill at that line about a trespassing informant. Flashbacks to the Ryan Frederick case.
Here’s the Standard-Examiner, once again:
The neighborhood was evacuated, and the federal Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms was called in, said a source close to the investigation speaking on condition of anonymity. The bomb couldn’t be moved and was detonated inside the home, he said.
“They also found a picture of the suspect dressed as a terrorist,” he said. “He was posing in a suicide bomber’s vest.”
The source had no detail on the type of bomb or any indications of a link with Stewart and any terrorist group. “I have no idea what any of it means,” he said.
And back to the Tribune:
But Stewart’s father said the photo actually shows his son in a Halloween costume that he wore three or four years ago.
“He was going to the party as Osama bin Laden,” the father explained.
Amazing the different impression you if you read just one of the two stories. Once again, we know very little so far. But it’s unfortunate that (a) someone “close to the investigation” is feeding the Standard Examiner bad information, (b) that person is requesting—and being given—anonymity, and (c) the Standard-Examiner is running with the bad information, apparently without bothering to get confirmation.
The DA, by the way, has announced that he’ll be seeking the death penalty.