They’re on the front lines of the war on terror and on Wednesday, they were in Preston to prepare.
Dozens of local, state, and federal law enforcement from Connecticut and beyond came to the old Norwich State Hospital grounds as part of a week-long Blast School, an intensive course taught by expert bomb technicians and federal prosecutors.
The goals are to prevent a bomb from going off, catch the bad guys when one does, and make sure there’s enough evidence to put those responsible away for a long time.
According to Sam DiPasquale, an FBI Master Bomb Technician, an explosion can tell you a lot about what and who is behind it, from the color and smell of the smoke to the traces of chemicals left behind in the rubble.
“These students will actually go through and forensically collect evidence. They'll present it to the federal prosecutors. They will guide them into other avenues if they're not there yet on how to gather more information,” he said.
More than a dozen easily obtainable explosive materials and detonators were tested, with students analyzing the damage the different materials cause and gathering evidence the feds will need to prosecute.
It’s not surprising that almost all the investigators who processed the Boston Marathon Bombing scene had previously trained in this class. “What we are trying to do is take these investigators that are here to the next level,” explained DiPasquale.