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Blast at Lake Elsinore home involving high explosives under investigation [Updated]

October 8, 2009 | 11:39 am

Federal and Riverside County authorities are investigating an explosion overnight at a Lake Elsinore home in which highly powerful explosives were used, according to a law enforcement source.

The blast occurred late Wednesday night at a home in the 30500 block of Audelo that was sometimes used for a day-care operation. A man in the home was seriously injured, according to the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

Riverside County sheriff's detectives, FBI investigators and bomb technicians and agents with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are taking part in the investigation.

The source said investigators were trying to determine if the explosive found at the home was similar to acetone peroxide, or TATP, the powerful explosive used in the 2007 London subway terrorist bombings. But there is no evidence at this time that the Lake Elsinore case in related to terrorism.

[Updated at Noon: Authorities detonated some of the explosives found in the house this morning. That blast was heard around the neighborhood.

Alma Coronado, 35, who lives on the same street as the home where the blast occurred, said she was awakened around 6:30 a.m. Thursday from a deafening pop.

"It was really loud. I thought it was thunder and was starting to storm," she said. "The windows started shaking."

Her husband went outside the home to investigate but did not see anything. She said the neighborhood is usually pretty quiet.

The law enforcement source said the explosives posed no threat to the public, but investigators were trying to determine whether someone was trying to build pipe bombs at the home. The source said they are investigating any links to skinhead groups -- but stressed the investigation is still in its early stage.]

-- Andrew Blankstein and My-Thuan Tran