MONROE (WWJ) – Federal investigators are offering a $10,000 reward for tips in the bombing of a Toledo-area attorney’s van as he was taking his kids to a little league football game.
ATF agents are now investigating the blast that turned a vehicle along a Monroe street into a blackened shell and seriously injured a man and two children inside. It happened at the intersection of Elm Avenue and I-75 late Tuesday night in Monroe.
Windows were blown out as the father, reportedly Erik Chappell, a divorce attorney from Sylvania, Ohio, pulled his sons from the burning vehicle. The only thing left was the metal frame.
Senior ATF agent Donald Dawkins called the fire and explosion that seriously injured the man and his two sons a “heinous crime”.
“Anytime that you have an explosion of this nature … but when you have children involved it really hits home. It’s a horrific crime and, believe me, we’re doing everything we can to solve it,” he said.
Dawkins would not confirm the victim’s identity, but said they are continuing to talk to him.
No suspects or motives have been identified. Dawkins said it does not appear to be act of terrorism.
WWJ spoke with Ruth Holly, who was nearby when it happened.
“I was fearful that somebody might be in it [the van], and at that time I had no clue if they’d gotten out or not,” said Holly. “I really didn’t want to go down and see someone burning … and it was totally engulfed when I looked,” she said.
All three victims were last reported in serious condition at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Monroe.