Unabomber News History

Copyright 1995 Boston Herald Inc.

The Boston Herald

May 9, 1995 Tuesday FIRST EDITION


LENGTH: 365 words

HEADLINE: For 17 years, killer has defied authorities



The crazed killer known as Unabomber has murdered three victims and injured at least 23 - sending 16 mail bombs in a 17-year reign of terror that has baffled a federal task force.

Federal investigators say they have never seen a bomber like him and concede he could strike again at any time.

"We don't know what his motivation is. We don't know what his demands are. It's so damned difficult," says Rick Smith of the San Francisco FBI office.

Two years of intense investigation by two dozen agents from the FBI, Treasury Department and the U.S. Postal Service have yielded few solid leads.

The Unabomber is believed to be a white male, in his 40s, quiet, anti-social and very meticulous. Instead of buying electrical switches for his explosives he makes them himself.

"The bombs have increased in sophistication," said Smith. "Today he's more able to do certain things than 17 years ago."

The targets have changed over the years. First they were universities and professors, particularly engineering. Then aviation, with an American Airlines flight almost blown up in 1979. Then computer stores. In 1993, it was back to professors.

The Unabomber, they believe, once lived in Chicago, has frequented Salt Lake City and probably moved to the San Francisco area.

There are too many suspects - about 3,000 since the probe began.

California timber industry lobbyist Gilbert B. Murray was the Unabomber's third and latest fatal victim, killed two weeks ago when he opened a heavy shoebox-type package delivered to his Sacramento office near the state capitol.

Federal investigators have also tied the Unabomber to mail explosives that killed a Sacramento computer store rental clerk in 1987 and a New Jersey advertising executive in 1994.

Murray, who was in his late 40s, was a lobbyist for the California Forestry Association. The package was not addressed to him, but the FBI declined to identify the intended recipient.

Besides two Massachusetts scientists, the Unabomber also sent a mocking letter last month to a previous victim, Yale computer scientist David Gelernter.

In that letter he ridiculed Gelernter for opening a package bomb that injured him in 1993.