Los Angeles Police Department and Homeland Security are investigating an image posted on social media by an ISIS-related group showing a photoshopped explosion to a skyscraper in downtown Los Angeles.
The disturbing image shows a massive explosion on top of the AON Center, located at 707 Wilshire Boulevard in downtown Los Angeles, California, with a terrorist holding an ISIS flag centered in the frame. Aon Center is a 62-story, 860 ft office building, the third tallest building in the city.
On Saturday, the LAPD published a series of tweets indicating that there was no credible threat to the city’s buildings in connection with the image. Law enforcement officials said they continue to work with the federal government to “coordinate any information that will lead to the source of the post.”
“The Los Angeles Police Department is aware of the posting made on social media… however, at this point we have not been able to find any credible threat against buildings in our city,” the LAPD said. “Nevertheless, we are taking this very seriously and are working with our federal partners to coordinate any information that will lead to the source of the post.”
FOX 11 contacted Aon administrators, who provided the following statement: “Aon’s building security has confirmed with the Department of Homeland Security that this is a non-credible threat.”
In a separate report, Steve Gomez, a terrorism and security expert, said: “You have to take this very seriously because the fact is that skyscrapers here in Los Angeles have been a target by terrorist organizations.”
Gomez said these threats are not new. Back in 2002, the federal government thwarted a plot by Al Qaeda to fly a hijacked passenger jet into the US Bank Tower in downtown Los Angeles.
“That was a serious plot, that was considered the follow up to 9/11 – the second wave,” Gomez said. “And in that case law enforcement, the United States intelligence community, were able to successfully identify the plot and apprehend a number of the suspects.”
Over the weekend, nothing looked unusual at Aon, and a number of the people who worked there said there was no indication of a possible threat.