Winnipeg police are confirming it was a bomb that set off a fire inside a truck that sent four people to the hospital on the weekend, including two who remain in critical condition.
Police say one of the victims found a bag on the hood of a car in a convenience store parking lot, put it in their truck and drove off. The owner of the bag likely forgot it was on the hood when going into the store, police believe.
Spokesman Const. Rob Carver says a short time later the bag containing an improvised explosive device blew up.
Carver say the victims — two men, ages 27 and 22, a 20-year-old woman and a 17-year-old boy — were not targeted and says the general public is not at risk.
Police have yet to make any arrests in connection with the incident.
But Carver says police are pulling out all the stops to find the suspects.
“It’s incredibly alarming,” he says. “I can tell you the Winnipeg police service has devoted all the resources it can to tying this up.
“We do not believe this was designed to harm random people in the city.”
However, he can’t say if there was someone who was being targetted.
“I think it’s reasonable to assume when someone has gone to all the trouble to make an explosive device of this power, that there’s some other backstory.”
One of those in the truck, Shaunovin Houle, suffered burns to his arm, hand and face in the incident.
“The whole vehicle on the inside was just in flames instantly,” says Houle, who jumped out a back window.
“I just got out, my arm was on fire, same with my hand here, my hair and pretty much I just ripped off my shirt and put myself out,” he tells CTV Winnipeg.
Houle says he believes his friends took the bag out of curiosity.
“It’s a really uneasy feeling especially knowing if we weren’t the ones, it would be somebody else who would have found that bag right?”
(CJOB, CTV Winnipeg)