ELIZABETH, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — An Elizabeth, New Jersey barber said Wednesday that the suspect in the bombings this past weekend came to his shop at a point between the incidents in Seaside Park and in Chelsea.
As CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez reported, Mario Bilereo said he has been cutting suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami’s hair for 10 years.
Bilereo said Rahami came into his shop, next door to the suspect’s Elizabeth home on Saturday afternoon. The visit came after an explosive went off in a garbage can before a planned charity race in Seaside Park, New Jersey, but before a bomb detonated on 23rd Street in Chelsea and left dozens injured.
Rahami is suspected in both incidents.
“He looks normal – very, very normal,” Bilereo said.
Bilereo said Rahami came in with two men he did not recognize, and said one of them needed a haircut.
“The other guy, he shaved everything,” Bilereo said. “He only leave a little bit here and here and shaved everything.”
The FBI on Wednesday released surveillance pictures of two other men they want to talk to. Police said the men were seen discovering a piece of luggage that was carrying a pressure cooker bomb that was found on 27th Street, but did not detonate.
Investigators said the men took the bag, but left the bomb behind.
“They are witnesses,” said NYPD Counterterrorism Chief James Waters. “There are no criminal charges. They are not in any jeopardy of being arrested.”
According to a criminal complaint, about two days before the bombings, Rahami was seen on cellphone video experimenting with explosives in his backyard. There is an evident patch of scorched land in the yard.
Investigators said the video “depicts the lighting of the fuse, a loud noise and flames, followed by billowing smoke and laughter.” One next-door neighbor said she called police at least twice because someone was burning material Rahami’s yard.
Bilereo said he never saw anything suspicious, and never heard any explosions.
When asked if he thought Rahami was a terrorist, Bilereo said “no.”
Rahami remained hospitalized Wednesday and was being held on $5.2 million bail. A judge has granted the mother of Rahami’s 9-yetar-old daughter temporary sole custody of the child.