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U.S. Ends Probe of Philadelphia House Bombing That Killed 11

Associated Press

The Justice Department announced today it is closing, without issuing any indictments, the federal investigations of the 1985 MOVE incident in Philadelphia in which 11 people died when police dropped a bomb on a heavily fortified row house.

The FBI launched an inquiry into the incident in July, 1985, and a federal grand jury began its review in April, 1987, of whether city officials violated the civil rights of the victims who died in the bombing and fire that destroyed 61 row houses.

The investigations won’t result in any indictments and the grand jury won’t issue a report, said Assistant Atty. Gen. William Bradford Reynolds, who issued a three-paragraph statement announcing the end of the investigations.

A local grand jury in Philadelphia earlier this year strongly criticized city officials for their handling of the confrontation. But no charges resulted from that investigation, either.

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Philadelphia Mayor Wilson Goode approved the use of the bomb, which contained the powerful military explosive C-4 and was dropped from a helicopter.


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