Investigators treating packages as ‘live devices,’ not hoax

  • Mayor Bill deBlasio, left, listens as Police Commissioner James P. O’Neil speaks during a news conference on the latest in the package bomb investigation, Thursday Oct. 25, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • Police tape cordons off a post office in Wilmington, Del., Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018. A law enforcement official said suspicious packages addressed to former Vice President Joe Biden were intercepted at Delaware mail facilities in New Castle and Wilmington and were similar to crude pipe bombs sent to former President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and CNN. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

WASHINGTON — Investigators searched coast-to-coast Thursday for clues to the motives behind a mail bomb plot apparently aimed at critics of the president, analyzing the mechanics of the crude devices to reveal whether they were intended to detonate or simply sow fear two weeks before Election Day.