SAPD Chief McManus urges residents to be vigilant amid Austin explosions

13 March, 2018, 11:24 | Author: Bert Pena
  • One person dead one hurt after reported explosion in Austin Texas

Two parcel bombs rattled the USA city of Austin on Monday, 10 days after a similar deadly blast, as Texas police said they were investigating the possibility of serial hate crimes against African Americans.

"There are similarities that we can not rule out that these two items are, in fact, related", Manley said.

Speaking before the third incident, Manley said investigators aren't sure of a motive, but can't rule out the possibility of hate crimes because the residents of both homes were African-American.

The FBI confirmed with ABC News that they are assisting Austin police.

The first blast in Austin, Texas on March 12, 2018 occurred in the 4800 block of Oldfort Hill Dr, Austin Police Department said. "Every stop will be pulled out".

Meanwhile, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said his office's Criminal Justice Division would offer a reward of up to US$15,000 for information leading to the arrest of the person or people involved in the package bombs.

The US Postal Service told investigators that the packages did not come through their facilities, so the packages were likely left by someone at the doorstep, Manley said. Packages should not be touched; instead, Manley said to "go to the back of the residence and stay there" until law enforcement arrives to clear the area.

The first blast was first thought to have been a suspicious death but is now being treated as murder.

Police are investigating that incident as a suspicious death.

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The first bomb today exploded around 6:40 a.m. Monday. The victim in the incident came outside of her home to retrieve a package left on her front step, which exploded. Police did not elaborate on the woman's injuries.

"We have no specific ideology or victimology behind this, and it will remain an ongoing investigation while we pursue any and every lead", Manley said.

An ABC affiliate in Austin reported that the original call was made at 6:44 a.m. on Monday.

One of the bombs killed a 17-year-old boy Monday while a second one wounded the 75-year-old woman. A woman who had also been in the house was taken to hospital with injuries that were not believed to be life-threatening. Manley said it's unknown if the victims were intended targets.

"It scares everyone now they got to worry about a box showing up randomly", said neighbor Katelyn Ferguson. Boulevard. Manley said one of the residents had taken a package from the front porch inside and it exploded when they tried to open it in the kitchen.

He said officials with the USA post office and large package delivery services, including UPS and Federal Express, have no record of dropping off parcels to the three addresses. The packages are not from any of the official mail or delivery services.

The explosions happened amid hundreds of thousands of people visiting the city for the South by Southwest music, film, and technology festival known as SXSW.

"Enjoy yourself, have a good time", he said. But "be aware, look for things that are suspicious".



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