What to Know
College student Connor Golden lost his foot when he stepped on a homemade explosive in Central Park in July 2016
Investigators are still looking for the person who planted the explosive powder, though they don't think it was motivated by terrorism
Golden's family has been searching for clues themselves, and found what could be a game-changer in an old Instagram comment
With scant leads in the case of a mystery Central Park explosion, the parents of the college student maimed in the blast have been scouring old social media posts to look for new clues.
Last month, Carol Golden, Connor Golden’s mother, found what she thinks is a potential game-changer.
As she scanned historical comments posted on Instagram, Golden noticed a young man writing about his attempt to save her son’s life.
In the hours after the July 2016 explosion, an Instagram user who goes by the name "miloturambar" wrote:
- "Hi I was the guy stopping the bleeding of this guy till the paramedics arrived. I don’t have any news about him I am really worry he was in a really bad condition."
- "if anyone knows something about him please let me know."
- "Yes I was using a belt for the tourniquet till the police and paramedics arrived…"
The previously unknown social media posts brought new hope to the Goldens, who have consistently called for new witnesses to come forward in their son’s case.
"That was an extremely powerful piece of information for us to see for the first time and we would love nothing better than to thank that individual or put him in touch with Connor," said Kevin Golden, Connor’s father.
The I-Team has not been able to verify the identity of the Instagram user calling himself miloturambar. Consequently it’s difficult to verify his online claim that he helped stop Connor Golden’s bleeding. The Goldens say their son was in so much shock at the time of the blast, he doesn’t remember who stepped in to help save his life.
Desperate to know who – and where – miloturambar is, the Goldens are now hoping someone reading this article will recognize his profile picture and come forward.
Carol Golden has tried to reach out to the Instagram user online. So far her messages have not been returned. The Goldens have also asked law enforcement if the man pictured in the miloturambar Instagram account was ever interviewed. The Strategic Explosive & Arson Response Taskforce (SEAR), a joint team of ATF, NYPD, and FDNY personnel, has not said whether investigators ever made contact with miloturambar.
"The case remains ongoing, thus limiting our ability to comment further at this time," wrote Matthew Fleming, a spokesman for the ATF New York Field Division.
Though investigators are keeping tight-lipped about efforts to identify miloturambar, the Instagram user himself suggested that police ushered him away from the blast scene shortly after he applied that tourniquet to Connor Golden’s leg. In the same thread where he described stopping the bleeding, miloturambar wrote:
"The police told me to leave after the paramedics arrived but a don’t have any news about this guy."
As the Goldens wait for new leads, they aren’t sitting on their hands.
In an effort to bring more urgency to the Central Park probe, Carol Golden recently penned a New York Times op-ed and launched an online petition, both urging investigators to treat the Central Park explosion investigation more like a terrorism probe. In the petition she wrote:
"This horrible incident bears the telltale signs of domestic terrorism: the explosive is the same homemade material (TATP) used in the Paris, Brussels and Manchester terrorist attacks and the explosion occurred on a national holiday weekend in one of the most heavily visited public parks in the U.S. within a city targeted by terrorists."
Investigators have long said they have no evidence the person or persons who planted the explosive powder in Central Park was motivated by terrorist intent. At the same time, they say no theory of the case has been ruled out.
"The investigators of the SEAR Task Force are actively pursuing all leads as part of the investigative process," Fleming said.