NEWS BRIEF Ahmad Khan Rahami, the man accused of setting off bombs in New York and New Jersey, grew up listening to rap and raced Honda Civics as a hobby. Friends said he was jovial, and his nickname, “Mad,” had nothing to do with his personality.
Rahami was a first-generation Afghan immigrant who became a naturalized American citizen. His father, Mohammed, was from Kandahar, fought as part of the mujahedin against the Soviets, and left his country after the U.S. invaded in 2001.
Rahami, 28, worked much of his adult life at First American Fried Chicken, his father’s fried chicken and burger restaurant, and lived with his family above the business in Elizabeth, New Jersey. It was near his home that one of the many bombs he’s suspected of planting were found in a backpack Sunday night.
The next morning, on Monday, Rahami was found sleeping outside a bar in Linden, New Jersey. Officers quickly recognized him from widely circulated photos. In the ensuing shootout, two officers were injured. Rahami was shot several times. None of the injuries—those sustained by the officers or Rahami’s—are life threatening.
Rahami is charged with five counts of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer and is being held on $5.2 million bail. He has not yet been charged with the bombings on Saturday in Seaside Park, New Jersey, and Manhattan, New York, or for the other bombs authorities found over the weekend. Loretta Lynch, the U.S. attorney general, said Tuesday the explosions were being investigated “as an act of terror.”