THURMONT, Md. - Federal agents are at work in a rural Frederick County town after someone detonated a pipe bomb on the windshield of a Thurmont police cruiser.
The unoccupied car was parked in front of an officer’s home early Wednesday when the homemade bomb went off at around 12:30 a.m.
Investigators said the blast could have been deadly if someone was in or around the car. Debris sprayed across the street and even into the home of the officer.
“It went through a window and lodged into drywall,” said Thurmont Police Detective Jody Maybush.
Investigators on the case were able to track a suspect's recent transactions on a debit card and use security footage to identify Kyle Rutger Mueller, 22, as the person responsible for manufacturing and detonating the bomn.
Maybush said investigators don’t know if Mueller was targeting the specific officer, the Thurmont Police Department or law enforcement in general. The FBI and ATF were in Thurmont for a meeting about the case Thursday.
“There has been increased layers of protection for [the officer’s residence], as well as the community and town,” Maybush said.
The explosion jolted a quiet neighborhood awake.
“I thought someone was breaking into my window it was so loud,” said neighbor Mary Jo Williard. “So I just laid there real still until I got the nerve to get up and look out front.”
She said she can’t believe what happened to her neighbor.
“He’s such a good guy,” she said. “He’s been nice to me, and he’s a family man.”
The officer told FOX 5 he didn’t want to speak on camera at this point in the investigation, but is taking several days off to be with his family.