US mosque bombing suspect shot dead

2011-05-05 10:01
Orienta - A man wanted in the bombing of a Florida mosque was shot and killed on Wednesday when he brandished a weapon as agents tried to serve an arrest warrant in northwest Oklahoma, FBI officials said.

Sandlin Matthews Smith, aged 46, of Florida, pulled out a firearm as federal and state law enforcement officers approached him in a field at Glass Mountain State Park near Orienta and asked him to surrender, said FBI Special Agent Jeff Westcott of Jacksonville, Florida.

Westcott said agents learned late on Tuesday that Smith was staying in a tent in the park, located in the rugged foothills of the Glass Mountains in northwest Oklahoma.

"During the overnight hours, the Oklahoma City FBI SWAT team, along with the assistance of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, set up a perimeter around the area," Westcott said.

Agent Clayton Simmonds at the FBI's Oklahoma City office said Smith was taken to a hospital in Fairview, where he was pronounced dead.

Reporters were kept back about two miles from the scene of the shooting, which is located in a sparsely populated area of Major County. Simmonds said he didn't think there were any other campers at the park.

Centre commends police

Smith was facing several federal charges, including damage to religious property and possession of a destructive device, in connection with the May 10 2010, bombing of the Islamic Centre of Northeast Florida in Jacksonville.

No one was hurt in that explosion, but authorities found remnants of a crude pipe bomb at the scene, and shrapnel from the blast was found a hundred metres away.

The centre issued a statement commending law enforcement officers' diligence in finding the person responsible for the blast.

"The membership and constituents of the Islamic Centre of Northeast Florida join all citizens of goodwill in Jacksonville to express their relief that any threat posed by the person suspected in the bombing of the Islamic Centre has ceased as well as convey their regret that any lives were lost," the statement read.

Simmonds said it's unclear why Smith was in Oklahoma. He said the shooting still was being investigated.

"I'm not at liberty to say who fired on him," Simmonds said.


Read more on:    us  |  security  |  religion
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News
 

US biker deaths down: What's the secret?

Motorcycle deaths are on track to decline for a second year in the US thanks to a so far - on bikes - little-used road safety accessory.

 

Stay safe

US biker deaths down: What's the secret?
Pro's and con's of accredited driver-training
Juvenile pillion riders? Play safe...
Need a family ride? SA's top Mommy Cars
Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You are eager to please and expand your horizons today. You may take on more than you anticipated and feel the effects later. Keep...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.