2 deadly package explosions in Austin are connected, police say
- Author: Sonia Alvarado Mar 13, 2018,
Mar 13, 2018, 4:33
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 the attacks were serial hate crimes.
A 17-year-old boy was killed and a woman was injured when a package exploded at a home near Martin Luther King Boulevard and Springdale before 7 a.m. today. Police are investigating whether or not the explosion is linked to another deadly explosion on March 2 when a man was killed at another residence.
Manley said there is no known motive for the explosions, but he said local and federal agents are exploring whether the incidents could be racially motivated since the first two victims were African-American and the elderly woman is Hispanic.
Some have started pointing out purported patterns to the explosions, but police have thus far said only that there is not now a "specific ideology or victimology" behind the apparent attacks.
Austin's police chief says package bombs caused both explosions in Texas' capital city on Monday, making it three this month.
Earlier in the day, police responded to an explosion in the 4800 block of Old Fort Hill Drive.
Since news of the explosion has emerged, police have received 34 suspicious package calls as of 3 p.m., compared to two calls at the same time last Monday. "If you see a suspicious package on yours or somebody else's doorstep, let us know".
Investigators have found no evidence so far of a terrorism link and have yet to establish a definite motive or profile for the bomber, Mr Manley said.
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The boy was found dead at the scene and a woman aged in her 40s was rushed to hospital with potentially life threatening injuries. Manley said Monday's first explosion is similar to the March 2nd explosion and is "likely related".
That was about 12 miles (20 kilometers) from the home where the March 2 package bomb killed 39-year-old Anthony Stephan House.
"We're looking at any possible avenues in these two cases", Manley said.
Jessica Stratton, who was attending the festival, said she saw TV reports about the bombings.
He says the package that exploded Monday and the one that detonated on March 2 had been left on the front doorsteps and were not delivered by a mail service.
The female's injuries were not life-threatening, he said.
The FBI and ATF are assisting the Austin Police Department in the investigation of the three cases.
The three explosions occurred in different parts of east Austin, which is east of Interstate 35, the highway that divides the city. Investigators said it was possible that the victims were targeted due to their race. There are about 15 miles (if walking) between the first explosion and the last.