Bomber’s paper trail leads to truck stop

| 4/27/2007

A man who sent threatening letters and pipe bombs to financial institutions was arrested earlier this week, thanks in part to a stop he made at a truck stop near Des Moines, IA.

The Associated Press reports that John Tompkins of Dubuque, IA – who called himself “The Bishop” – made a brief stop at a Bosselman Travel Center in Iowa last year to withdraw some cash from an ATM.

It was the receipt from that ATM that led investigators to Tomkins. On the same day that he made the withdrawal, he mailed four threatening letters postmarked from Des Moines, IA.

The mailbox the letters were dropped into is just a few feet from the ATM Tomkins used.

Investigators told The AP the bombs Tomkins sent always had one wire disconnected on purpose, so they would never go off.