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UPDATE: Bomb That Exploded At A FedEx Facility Was Sent From, And To, Austin, Police Say

A package that exploded at a FedEx Ground distribution facility in Schertz was addressed to a location in Austin. It’s the fifth explosion of a device either in Austin or meant to be delivered to the city.

THE LATEST on serial bombings in Texas:

Congressman Michael McCaul: Videos “could possibly” show suspect

5:30 p.m.

The chairman of the U.S. House Homeland Security committee says federal authorities informed him investigators have obtained surveillance videos in Austin that “could possibly” show a suspect in the package bombing at a FedEx distribution center near San Antonio.

Congressman Michael McCaul told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he’s been briefed by the FBI, ATF and Austin police about the situation. But he adds that investigators are still poring through the surveillance recordings.

Austin police earlier said another suspicious package was discovered at a second FedEx center near Austin’s main airport. McCaul says evidence obtained from that package if kept intact could be key in finding the bomber.

McCaul, whose district includes Austin, says he hopes the bomber’s “biggest mistake was going through FedEx.”

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FedEx gives “extensive evidence” to authorities

3:45 p.m.

FedEx says it has turned over “extensive evidence” to authorities after a package exploded at its processing center in the town of Schertz, south of Austin.

In a statement, the company says “the individual responsible” for sending the package that blew up also shipped a second package that has been secured and turned over to law enforcement.

FedEx says it gave authorities evidence “related to these packages and the individual that shipped them collected from our advanced technology security systems.”

A company spokeswoman subsequently refused to say if that second package might have been linked to a suspicious package that authorities seized at another FedEx shipping facility on Tuesday, this one in south Austin, near the city’s airport.

No arrests have been made in the five bombings that have rocked the Austin area since March 2.

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Congressman Michael McCaul: Latest blast could lead to more evidence

3:25 p.m.

The chairman of the U.S. House Homeland Security committee says he thinks the latest package explosion in Texas will lead to more evidence, “hopefully fingerprints and surveillance photos.”

Congressman Michael McCaul, a Republican from Texas, made the comments Tuesday at a White House roundtable discussion on so-called sanctuary cities. It’s not clear whether McCaul was speaking with knowledge of specific information in the case.

McCaul also thanked President Donald Trump for sending 500 federal agents to Austin “to find this perpetrator and bring him to justice.”

A package exploded early Tuesday at a FedEx distribution center near San Antonio. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says the package was sent from Austin and was addressed to a home in Austin.

Four other package bombs have exploded in Austin since March 2.

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Worker: Austin facility evacuated before sunrise

3:10 p.m.

An employee at a FedEx center in Austin says managers ordered workers outside before sunrise after a suspicious package showed up.

Bryan Jaimes told reporters Tuesday he estimates there were about 60 people working at the facility near the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport when the building was cleared out.

The 19-year-old package handler says workers left calmly and that he’s glad he made it out safe. He returned to the center hours later hoping to be allowed back in to get his car and phone. The facility remains closed.

Jaimes says he never received new guidance from managers about handling packages as Austin authorities look for what they’ve called a “serial bomber.” He said his job is to load the trucks.

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1:20 p.m.

The San Antonio Police Department says its police chief was mistaken when he said that investigators found a second package bomb that hadn’t detonated at a FedEx distribution center.

The department says in a news release police Chief William McManus misspoke at a news conference earlier Tuesday and that there was only one package bomb at the Schertz facility — the one that exploded.

It forwarded any inquiries to the FBI and Austin Police Department.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton earlier told The Associated Press that there was a “suspicion” of another package, but he stopped short of confirming there were two.

Officials say the package bomb that exploded early Tuesday apparently went out from a FedEx store in the Austin enclave of Sunset Valley and was addressed to an Austin home. It blew up on a conveyer belt at the FedEx ground center in Schertz, which is outside of San Antonio and about 60 miles (95 kilometers) southwest of Austin.

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12:45 p.m.

Austin police say they’ve called the bomb squad to investigate a suspicious package at a FedEx shipping center outside of the city’s airport.

Austin police spokeswoman Destiny Winston said Tuesday that the package was reported shortly before sunrise. She says federal investigators were called to the scene as a precaution due to “past events.”

Four package bombs have detonated in Austin this month, killing two people and injuring four others. A fifth that officials say was sent from the Austin area to an address in Austin exploded early Tuesday at a FedEx distribution center near San Antonio, where investigators found another parcel bomb that hadn’t exploded.

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12:30 p.m.

Austin police say they’ve responded to more than 1,200 calls in the last two weeks from people worried that suspicious packages could be bombs.

Police said Tuesday that they’ve responded to 1,257 calls since March 12, when packages exploded at two homes in Austin, killing a 17-year-old and injuring two others. On March 2, a 39-year-old man was killed when a package bomb exploded.

On Sunday, a bomb triggered by a tripwire injured two men in a quiet neighborhood in southwest Austin.

Police say that between 8 a.m. Monday and 8 a.m. Tuesday, they responded to 420 calls about suspicious packages.

Officials say a bomb that exploded early Tuesday at a FedEx distribution center near San Antonio went out from an Austin-area FedEx store and was addressed to an Austin home.

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12:15 p.m.

Investigators have closed off an Austin-area FedEx store from where officials say two package bombs were sent to a distribution center near San Antonio, including one that detonated.

Authorities have roped off a large area around the shopping center in the Austin enclave of Sunset Valley where the store is located. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says the parcel bomb that exploded early Tuesday in the distribution center in Schertz was mailed from Austin and addressed to an Austin home.

The police department in Sunset Valley, which is surrounded on all sides by Austin, says it appears that both package bombs that made it to the Schertz facility went out from the Sunset Valley store.

Authorities suspect the parcel bombs are linked to the four bombs that have killed two people and injured four others in Austin this month.

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11:40 a.m.

President Donald Trump is blaming a “very sick individual or individuals” for a series of bombings in Austin, Texas.

Trump said during an Oval Office meeting Tuesday with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that the situation is “terrible.”

He says, “This is obviously a very sick individual or individuals” and that authorities are “working to get to the bottom of it.”

Trump’s comments came hours after an early-morning explosion at a FedEx distribution center near San Antonio. Authorities say it was a bomb addressed to an Austin home that had been sent from Texas’ capital city. Investigators found a second bomb at the facility that hadn’t exploded.

Authorities believe the latest parcel bombs are linked to the four bombings this month in Austin that have killed two people and injured four others.

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10:30 a.m.

Authorities say the package that exploded at a FedEx ground facility near San Antonio was on a conveyer belt when it detonated.

Schertz police Chief Michael Hansen said at a news conference that one worker reported feeling ringing in her ears after the early Tuesday blast, but she was treated and released.

Hansen said that the intended target of the parcel bomb wasn’t the facility or anyone who lives in Schertz, which is about 60 miles (95 kilometers) southwest of Austin. But neither Hansen nor federal agents who spoke at the news conference would say where the package was sent to or from or give any other details about the investigation, saying it was still unfolding.

An FBI spokeswoman, agent Michelle Lee, said earlier Tuesday “it would be silly for us not to admit that we suspect it’s related” to the four Austin bombings that have killed two people and injured four others since March 2.

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A package sent to an address in Austin exploded early this morning at a FedEx facility in Schertz, Texas, about 60 miles south of Austin, according to the FBI and local law enforcement.

“Early this morning, Schertz Police responded to the Fedex facility in the 9900 block of Doerr Lane for a report of an explosion,” Schertz police wrote on Facebook. “Further investigation revealed the explosion came from a package in the sorting area of the facility. One person was treated and released at the scene.”

Near the 9800 block of Doerr Ln. in Schertz Texas. Schertz is a suburb of San Antonio near the Guadalupe and comal county lines and Bexar County line.

In a statement, FedEx confirmed one employee sustained injuries in the blast. 

“We can confirm that a single package exploded while in a FedEx Ground sortation facility early this morning. One team member is being treated for minor injuries,” FedEx said. “We are working closely with law enforcement in their investigation.  We are not providing any additional specific information about this package at this time.”

Early this morning, Schertz Police responded to the Fedex facility in the 9900 block of Doerr Lane for a report of an…

Posted by Schertz Police Department on Tuesday, March 20, 2018

 

 

The explosion comes amid a string of four bombings that have struck Austin over the past three weeks. Two people have been killed, and four others wounded.

“We believe that the [latest] explosion is likely connected to our overall investigation into the bombings,” FBI Special Agent Michelle Lee told KUT.

Interim Austin Police Chief Brian Manley issued a statement on the explosion.

The Austin Fire Department says has received calls about a suspicious package at a FedEx facility on 4117 McKinney Falls Parkway, near the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. The fire department’s hazardous materials team is at the scene with the Austin Police Department and Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services. 

This is a developing story

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