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Northeastern University VR lab rattled by pressurized explosive device

The staff member who opened the package had minor hand injuries; an enclosed note railed against VR

UPDATE: The individual who was injured in the detonation of the pressurized Pelican-style case has denied staging the incident. As reported by Fox News, in an interview with the Boston Globe the 45-year-old victim, a Northeastern University employee, rejected the notion that he lied to law enforcement or that he was the person behind the reported detonation.

UPDATE: Multiple law enforcement sources tell WCBV 5 Investigates that authorities are now looking into whether the Northeastern University employee who reported that a Pelican-style case exploded when he opened it Tuesday night staged the incident. Those sources also told 5 Investigates on Wednesday that there was no explosive material found at the scene inside Holmes Hall and that the employee’s injuries were not consistent with those typically suffered during an explosion. A spokesperson for the FBI office in Boston declined to comment Wednesday, saying the investigation is “still very active and fluid.” [email protected]


ORIGINAL POST: AV is rarely controversial. Frustrating maybe, inequitable sometimes, but normally hating on AV does not register as an actual explosion. But now that our tech is crossing paths with VR and AI we may find that we’re flying with the crows and Zuckerbergs. The incident harmed a 45-year-old staff person who opened the pressurized plastic “Pelican-style” case; reportedly the hand injuries were minor, although they were treated at a nearby hospital. There were reportedly no actual explosives or ignition system in the package, just an explosive tirade against VR and academic complicity in general, and Mark Zuckerberg in particular. The package was not sent through the post office.

The incident was reported shortly after 7pm local time yesterday Sept 13th at Holmes Hall on the Northeastern Campus. The university cancelled classes in nearby halls as a precaution. The university now reports the campus is “safe and secure.”

The Boston Police Department’s Bomb Squad, Boston Emergency Management Services, and other law enforcement agencies remain at the scene investigating.

The university serves more than 16,000 undergraduate students, according to last year’s enrollment report.

MORE AV DANGER: Watch video wall fall on newscaster and not hurt him

Northeastern is offering support services such as confidential counseling for students and staff, the university said.

According to CNN, police were called to the scene around 7:18 p.m., Boston Police Superintendent Felipe Colon said Tuesday night.

About a minute after the initial call, a Northeastern University police officer arrived at Homes Hall, said Michael Davis, chief of the university police department.

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