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FBI increases reward for info on pipe bombs found near RNC and DNC headquarters to $500,000

The FBI has increased the reward for information on pipe bombs found near RNC and DNC headquarters the night before the 2021 US Capitol riot to $500,000. (Provided photo/FBI via CNN)

 (CNN) — The FBI is now offering $500,000 for information leading to an arrest of the person who placed pipe bombs near the Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, DC, the night before the 2021 US Capitol riot, the bureau announced Wednesday.

The announcement represents a sharp increase in the amount of money the government is willing to pay for information in the investigation: the monetary reward had previously stood at $100,000 prior to Wednesday, up from the $50,000 the bureau initially offered in the wake of the riot.

The increased amount comes days before the two-year anniversary of the insurrection. Little information has been released about the investigation since the pipe bombs, which were viable but never detonated, were discovered.

“With the significantly increased reward, we urge those who may have previously hesitated to contact us — or who may not have realized they had important information — to review the information on our website and come forward with anything relevant,” said David Sundberg, the assistant director in charge of the FBI field office in DC, in a statement.

“Despite the unprecedented volume of data review involved in this case, the FBI and our partners continue to work relentlessly to bring the perpetrator of these dangerous attempted attacks to justice,” Sundberg added.

The statement said that investigators have “conducted around 1,000 interviews, visited more than 1,200 residences and businesses, collected more than 39,000 videos, and assessed nearly 500 tips” about the pipe bomber.

The bombs were discovered within minutes of each other around 1 p.m. ET on January 6, just around the time that a mob of angry supporters of then-President Donald Trump descended on the building after a nearby rally with the president, according to an account the acting chief of the US Capitol gave to lawmakers in January and the FBI poster.

According to the FBI, the individual placed the two pipe bombs between 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. on January 5, 2021.

Security footage released by the FBI shows the person was carrying a backpack in their hand and wearing a face mask, gray hooded sweatshirt and black and light grey Nike Air Max Speed Turf sneakers with a yellow logo.

In releasing additional footage in September 2021, the FBI said that “reviews of the suspect’s behavior in video footage and interviews with residents in the Capitol Hill neighborhood have led the FBI to believe the suspect is not from the area.”

CNN previously reported the devices had been rigged to egg timers and filled with an explosive powder. Officers from the ATF, FBI, US Capitol Police and DC Metropolitan Police had responded to the scene at the two offices, which are less than a quarter mile apart and just blocks south of the Capitol, and the bombs were safely detonated at the scene by robots.