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Source: Deliveryman had cane-shaped weapon

From Mike Brooks
CNN

Brian Douglas Wells just before he was killed by a bomb August 28.
Brian Douglas Wells just before he was killed by a bomb August 28.

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ERIE, Pennsylvania (CNN) -- A cane-shaped device capable of firing like a gun was found in the possession of a Pennsylvania pizza deliveryman who was killed by a bomb clamped around his neck, a source confirmed to CNN Thursday.

The source described as "very accurate" a report in The New York Times that said the weapon was shaped like a walking cane and possibly made in a machine shop.

FBI Special Agent Ken McCabe said the weapon was found in the deliveryman's car.

Police said Brian Douglas Wells, 46, robbed a bank August 28 while wearing the bomb locked to his neck by a homemade metal collar.

After the robbery, Pennsylvania State Police stopped Wells, handcuffed him and sat him down on the ground, safely away from others. Police then called a bomb squad, but the device exploded, killing Wells, before bomb technicians arrived.

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Before the blast, Wells told police he had been forced to rob the bank and asked police to help him remove the bomb.

The FBI is likely to test the weapon found in the car to see whether it was manufactured with the same tools or in the same shop as the bomb collar, according to CNN Correspondent Mike Brooks, a former Washington Metropolitan police detective who has worked closely with the FBI.

McCabe on Wednesday was reluctant to describe the weapon, saying it was "unique" and "not what people traditionally think of as a gun."

McCabe said federal, state and local investigators are trying to determine whether Wells was forced to rob the bank, as he said, or whether he planned the robbery himself or with an accomplice.

Wells carried a note for bank employees during the robbery and another that included instructions for him, police said. Both notes are being examined for any fingerprints, handwriting, hair or fiber evidence, and the FBI has said investigators have not eliminated the possibility that Wells wrote the notes himself.

CNN Producer James Polk contributed to this report.


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