Police in Lake Wales, Florida are searching for a suspect who planted two improvised explosive devices inside of a Florida mall on Sunday night. The IEDs detonated in a service corridor at around 5:30 p.m. at the Eagle Ridge Mall. No injuries were reported following the explosions.
According to CNN, Lake Wales Police were responding to a smoke alarm call at Eagle Ridge Mall on Sunday when they discovered smoke coming out of a service corridor that was located outside of a JCPenney near the entrance to the mall. Upon further investigation, they reportedly discovered two IEDs constructed out of PVC pipe and wrapped in electric tape. The IEDs were located approximately 10 yards from one another in the corridor.
At this time, Lake Wales Police have not labeled the incident as an act of terrorism. Lake Wales Police Deputy Chief Troy Shulze spoke late Sunday and said police "don’t know what the person was trying to achieve." But police are on the hunt for a person of interest. They have revealed they are searching for a middle-aged white man with a heavy build who was wearing a gray shirt and hat inside of the mall just before the IEDs exploded.
Lake Wales Police reported there were approximately 100 people inside of the Eagle Ridge Mall when the IEDs detonated. They were all able to evacuate the premises without sustaining injuries. The FBI and ATF have both been brought in to play a part in the investigation into the IED explosion.