Austin Police said on Tuesday that a bomb that exploded inside a package at a FedEx facility near San Antonio, Texas, on Tuesday morning was apparently intended to be sent to Austin.
National Public Radio reports that the package detonated at 12:25 a.m. CT at the facility in Schertz, Texas, near San Antonio, according to the FBI. Chief Michael Hansen of the Schertz Police says that the package exploded while on an automated conveyor inside the facility, and one FedEx employee was nearby at the time. Although the employee complained later of “ringing in the ears,” there were no other injuries reported.
This is the fifth explosion of its nature to occur this month, as the first four explosions happened in east Austin areas, CNN reports. The March 2 explosion and two on March 12 killed or wounded three African-American people and one Hispanic person. CNN also notes that the areas where residents encountered these packages are home to minority residents, and some have expressed concern that these bomb attacks could be racially motivated. The March 18 explosion injured two white men in an area where most residents are white, CNN adds.
These bombings have led Austin police to believe that a serial bomber is at large, and now, this fifth explosion is an indicator that there may be more to come. Officials say that although the explosion occurred near San Antonio, it was both sent from and addressed to Austin, Attorney General Ken Paxton told KXAN TV news. He confirms that the package was addressed to an Austin resident.
And if that’s not terrifying enough, there has also been word of a second package that potentially contains the same threat.
“There was one other package that we believe was also loaded with an explosive device that they are working on right now,” says San Antonio Police Chief William McManus, according to the NPR.
The Sunset Valley police department released a statement on Facebook on Tuesday:
“The FBI is currently investigating a confirmed link between packages involved in the Austin bombing investigation and a mail delivery office in Sunset Valley. It appears that the source of the suspect packages was a private package delivery office in Sunset Valley. SVPD officers are assisting with traffic control within the affected area of the shopping center at 5601 Brodie Ln. At this time there are no known public safety threats to Sunset Valley residents, visitors or shoppers. However, residents should remain vigilant and report any suspicious packages, items, or occurrences by dialing 9-1-1.”
This is understandably a very scary time for Austin residents and those nearby, and we’re hoping this serial bombing case is resolved before any other injuries or deaths occur.