BBC Home
Explore the BBC
3 April  
Search ON THIS DAY by date
Go back one day Go forward one day  
Front Page |  Years |  Themes |  Witness
About This Site | Text Only
1996: 'Unabomber' suspect arrested
Police in the United States have arrested a man they believe to be the notorious "Unabomber" who has killed three people and maimed 23 others.

The suspect, named as Theodore Kaczynski, was arrested in Montana on Wednesday.

Attacks attributed to the Unabomber stretch back 18 years and span the US.

The first parcel bomb was sent in May 1978 and the last - which killed California Forestry Association president Gilbert Murray - was in April last year.

Theodore Kaczynski, 53, formerly taught mathematics at the University of California at Berkeley.

He is a graduate of Harvard University and received a doctorate from the University of Michigan.

Federal agents had long thought the Unabomber would have an academic background.

Promising career

The Unabomber tag came from a combination of the first letters of many of the targets - universities and airlines.

He was thought to be motivated by hatred of the capitalist system and technological advances.

Mr Kaczynski gave up his promising academic career in the early 1970s and moved to a tiny, primitive shack in a remote area on the edge of the Lolo National Forest in Montana.

A neighbour, Dick Lundberg, said he was considered to be a recluse.

"He kept to himself, never bothered anyone. He never did say anything bad about anybody. We thought he was all right," Mr Lundberg said.

A tip-off from members of Theodore Kaczynski's own family is said to have led to his arrest.

At the family home in Chicago they discovered notes by Mr Kaczynski which were strikingly similar to the Unabomber's "manifesto" published by the Washington Post and New York Times newspapers last year.

The family members - believed to be Mr Kaczynski's mother and brother - handed the notes over to the FBI.

They also allowed their house to be searched during which more evidence is said to have been found.

 E-mail this story to a friend


Watch/Listen
Theodore Kaczynski police photograph
Theodore Kaczynski had become a recluse

Ted Kaczynski aka the 'Unabomber' arrested


In Context
In May 1998 Theodore Kaczynski was sentenced to life imprisonment without parole.

During his trial Kaczynski said the government's case against him was "political" and admitted no guilt or remorse.

Despite a diagnosis of mental illness, he initially resisted using it in his defence.

Kaczynski avoided the death penalty after a plea bargain deal but later tried to commit suicide.

His younger brother David, who had first contacted the police, received a $1m reward.

He said he would use the money to help the Unabomber's victims.

Stories From 3 Apr


 
Search ON THIS DAY by date
Go back one day Go forward one day  

^^ back to top
Front Page |  Years |  Themes |  Witness
©MMVIII | News Sources | Privacy & Cookies Policy