A masquerade ball on Thursday, Sept. 23, turned from a fun party to a deadly crime as a bomb was set by an unknown person. Several people were killed, and many more were injured. Police had managed to clear people from the building and were searching it for both the perpetrator and any stragglers when the bomb went off.
Witnesses report seeing a strange man in a black trench coat lurking around the venue, and an anonymous caller phoned in a bomb threat about an hour after the event began. The caller, who seemed to be male, said the building was rigged to explode if anyone left it. He demanded one million dollars sent to a numbered bank account and said he would only diffuse the bomb once the money was sent.
Police arrived shortly and approached the building in full tactical gear, including shields. Women and children were taken from the building first, followed by anyone remaining. According to HPD spokesperson Porkins, officers found a dead body, with what seemed to be a knife wound to the stomach and a gun shot to the head. While police were searching the building, the bomb went off.
Officers Jaebus Clave and Sonja Valencia were seriously injured and transported to Hathian General Hospital. Ethan Cooper, a gym owner from Las Vegas, NV., was still inside the building when the bomb went off and died from injuries sustained in the blast. Smith Jones, a volunteer who was selling tickets to the event, died when the power of the blast knocked him back, causing him to hit his head. Many others were taken to HGH with injuries ranging from severe to mild.
Because the apparent bomber was killed, police were obviously unable to question him. His only motive seemed to be money, but there is speculation that the bomber was working with another person. However, Porkins stated the police currently have no leads on who this person might be.
The masquerade ball was presented by the Fire Department of Hathian and Hathian Civil Services. It was catered by The Pie Hole and the Berthier Street Bakery. WKRK DJ Vicus Volkoff provided the music. The event was intended to raise money for hurricane relief, specifically home owners and small business owners struggling to rebuild. Ticket purchases and matching donations raised a total of just over $30,000.