'Snitch' accusation preceded Cambria County bomb blast

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Moments before Brad Kollar blew himself up with a truck bomb in an apparent attempt to kill a man in Cambria County last week, he called his target and said, "I got you now, you snitch," according to court papers.

In previous conversations with others, he also had said he would not go to jail and threatened that anyone who tried to "come to get me" would be "blown up," according to a state police intelligence memo prepared in July.

Both of those revelations are contained in a search warrant for Mr. Kollar's property requested by state police after last Tuesday's blast.

But troopers still aren't sure why he tried to kill William Shaner, who survived the explosion that obliterated his house and injured his son.

Shortly before 9 a.m., Mr. Kollar backed his pickup into Mr. Shaner's driveway, issued his threat and detonated what authorities believe was an ammonium nitrate bomb similar to the one used in the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995.

A neighbor told police that after the blast, he ran to the scene and spoke with Mr. Shaner while he lay injured in the debris, according to the search warrant affidavit. He said Mr. Shaner told him Mr. Kollar had accused him of being a "snitch" and "then the house blew up," police wrote.

Trooper John Matchik of the Ebensburg barracks said Monday that police continue to examine the motive while they await test results on evidence from the scene sent to a lab run by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Mr. Kollar was due in court the morning of the bombing to be sentenced for running a chop shop and storing chemicals for an underground meth lab on his rural property. His father, John Kollar, is awaiting trial on related charges regarding the chop shop operation.

While the younger Mr. Kollar clearly blamed Mr. Shaner for the March 2012 police raid on his property and his arrest, Kelly Callihan, the district attorney in Cambria County, said last week that she was not sure how Mr. Kollar made the connection.

Among the unanswered questions, Trooper Matchik said, is whether Mr. Kollar intended to blow himself up, although the coroner ruled the death a suicide and Ms. Callihan said he had previously tried to kill himself with a bomb made from 1,600 pounds of explosive fuel.

Mr. Shaner remains in intensive care at Allegheny General Hospital with a broken back, sternum and ribs. His teenage son Ryan was treated at Altoona Hospital for minor injuries and released.


Torsten Ove: tove@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1510.


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