An explosion Sunday evening in a neighborhood of Austin, Texas had “similarities” with three other bombs that have exploded in the capital of the Lone Star state so far this month, police said on Monday.
Two men in their early 20s were injured Sunday when they set off a trip-wire explosive receiving “significant injuries”, however, both are expected to survive.
Sunday’s bomb attack shows a “higher level of sophistication” than the previous three bombs that have been detonated in Austin this month, according to Austin Interim Police Chief Brian Manley.
“We are clearly dealing with what we expect to be a serial bomber at this point,” Manley said. “Based on the similarities between now what is the fourth device.”
“Is this terrorism? Is this hate-related?” Manley asked. He said the investigation will “have determine if we see a specific ideology behind this.”
According to reporting form the Chicago Tribune, the two young men injured in Sunday’s bombing were both identified as white, unlike the previous victims in the earlier bombings who were either black or Hispanic.
“It is very possible that this device was a device that was activated by someone handling, kicking or coming into contact with a tripwire,” Manley said. “That changes things.”
“Our safety message to this point has been … do not handle packages, do not pick up packages, do not disturb packages,” Manley said. “We now need the community to have an extra level of vigilance and pay attention to any suspicious device — whether it be a package, a bag, a backpack — anything that looks out of place. Do not approach it.”
“It is very important that we stay away from anything that can be suspicious,” FBI special agent Christopher Combs said Monday morning. “We need this to stop. We are very concerned that people can get hurt by this just by walking now.”
(Crusader Journal Staff)