Ahmad Khan Rahami arrested in New Jersey following police shooting

Posted at 11:34 AM, Sep 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-19 14:24:04-04

LINDEN, N.J. — Ahmad Khan Rahami, wanted in connection to the explosions in Chelsea and Seaside Park, is in custody, a top law enforcement official said.

His arrest follows a police involved shooting.

Two officers were wounded during the shootout, said Chris Bollwage, the mayor of the nearby city of Elizabeth. One officer's vest was struck, and the other was shot in the hand.

Rahami was shot and wounded. He was taken into custody and placed in an ambulance with what appeared to be at least one wound on his upper right arm.

The owner of a bar in Linden, New Jersey, said he spotted Rahami sleeping in the doorway of his bar Monday morning and alerted police. Harinder Bains, owner of Merdie's Tavern, said he had been watching CNN on his laptop from another business he owns across the street. He said he recognized Rahami and called police.

Bombings in New York and New Jersey over the weekend -- as well as the discovery of several unexploded devices -- have led authorities to believe there may be a terror cell at work in those two states, law enforcement officials told CNN Monday.

Officials want to question Ahmad Khan Rahami because they believe he is the man seen in surveillance videos rolling a duffel bag near the scene of the bombing in Chelsea, according to multiple officials.

The FBI described Rahami as a naturalized U.S. citizen of Afghan descent with a last known address in Elizabeth, New Jersey -- the same city where an explosives-laden backpack was found Sunday night.

Earlier Saturday, a garbage can exploded near the starting line of a Marine Corps charity run in Seaside Park, New Jersey.

On Sunday night, a backpack with multiple bombs inside was found in Elizabeth, New Jersey. As authorities tried to investigate, one of those bombs exploded.

The series of attacks come as New York hosts world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly this week.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday the bombs found over the weekend have similarities, suggesting "there might have been a common linkage." He said the investigation is ongoing, and he "wouldn't be surprised if it zeroes in on a particular individual, today even," and he "wouldn't be surprised if we found a foreign connection to the act."

A federal law enforcement official said BBs and ball bearings were among the pieces of metal that appeared to be packed into two pressure cooker bombs in New York. One of those devices exploded on 23rd Street, but the fact that it was partly under a metal trash container may have diminished the force of the blast.

Surveillance videos showed the same man near the site of the explosion in Chelsea and where a pressure-cooker device was found four blocks away, several local and federal law enforcement sources told CNN.


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