Multiple people injured in New York explosion

NEW YORK — A day after a bombing injured 29 people in a Manhattan neighborhood, police are scouring the area for clues about who was responsible for the explosion and why it happened.

“We know it was a very serious incident, but we have a lot more work to do to be able to say what kind of motivation was behind this,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio told reporters Sunday. “Was it a political motivation? Was it a personal motivation? We do not know that yet.”

A few blocks away from the blast site, investigators found one possible clue: a pressure cooker, with dark-colored wiring protruding, connected by silver duct tape to what appears to be a cellphone, officials said.

It’s still unclear whether that suspicious device has any connection to Saturday’s explosion, which shook New York City’s Chelsea neighborhood and sent panicked people scrambling for cover.

A police bomb squad was still investigating the device Sunday afternoon, NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said.

“We don’t have everything in. Think of a jigsaw puzzle out in the street right now,” he said. “Do we think they’re related? Yes, we have to move in that direction, but right now we’re not ready to make those calls yet.”

Another question officials are looking into: Was the New York bombing related to an explosion that occurred in an eastern New Jersey trash can earlier Saturday?

Investigators have found some similarities between the bombs used in the two incidents, according to multiple law enforcement officials, but authorities said they have not concluded the explosions in New Jersey and New York are connected.

“We do not have any specific evidence of a connection, but that will continue to be considered. We’re not taking any options off the table,” de Blasio said.

Authorities step up security, ask public for help

City officials called on the public to help them track down who’s responsible.

Investigators are also combing through surveillance video for clues, but so far they haven’t found anything pointing to a suspect, a senior law enforcement official said.

Some of the video is not helpful because the cameras are either too far away or the footage is too grainy to tell what’s on it, the official said. Investigators will be canvasing for additional video Sunday.

“We will find whoever did this or whatever group did this and they will be brought to justice, period,” Cuomo said. “We will not allow these type of people and these type of threats to disrupt our life in New York.”

Authorities have cordoned off the street where the explosion occurred, in the Chelsea neighborhood south of Midtown in eastern Manhattan.

A small crowd watched from behind police tape Sunday as investigators gathered at the blast site. Some onlookers said residents who live on the block still hadn’t been allowed to return to their homes.

Investigators are still searching the scene for evidence, officials said.

“The evidence we’ve collected is being taken to our lab at Quantico for review, and we are following every available lead,” FBI Assistant Director in Charge William Sweeney Jr. said Sunday.

Meanwhile, New Yorkers will see an increased police presence around the city, de Blasio said.

And New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said 1,000 additional New York State Police officers and National Guard troops will be deployed to patrol bus terminals, airports and subway stations.

The stepped-up security is “just to err on the side of caution,” Cuomo said. “I want New Yorkers to be confident when they go back to work on Monday that New York is up and running and we’re doing everything that we need to do.”

Suspicious device found nearby

Police officers and federal agents searched the streets with flashlights, robots and dogs early Sunday to ensure there were no other devices in the area.

Multiple local and federal law enforcement officials described the pressure cooker found at 27th Street. None of them would say what was inside the cooker, which has since been removed from the scene.

A piece of paper with writing on it was found nearby, the officials said.

Search attention also focused on another object in the area, but it turned out to be trash.

De Blasio said investigators believe there is no connection to an earlier incident in New Jersey, where an explosion went off in a garbage can on the route of a Marine Corps charity run Saturday.

The New York explosion caused “significant property damage,” Cuomo said. “We really were lucky that there were no fatalities.”

By Sunday morning, all 29 injured victims had been released from hospitals, the governor said.