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20 Mar 2018

Package Explosion at Texas FedEx Facility Believed to Be 5th Strike Linked to Austin Bombings

A FedEx employee was injured early Tuesday after a package explosion, believed to be bound for Austin and linked to previous bombings in the state’s capital, detonated at a distribution center in Schertz, Texas.

The Schertz Police Department confirmed on Facebook that they responded to an explosion at the facility, which they determined came from the sorting area. NBC affiliate WOAI reported the package detonated while being transported from an upper conveyor belt to a lower one.

The package contained nails and shrapnel, according to the San Antonio Fire Department. The Washington Post reports that the package was believed to have been headed for Austin, the site of four previous bombings.

Police said “one person was treated and released at the scene.” The fire department added that the worker suffered a “non life threatening percussion type injury.”

FBI San Antonio spokeswoman Michelle Lee told CNN “we suspect it is related to our investigation” into the bombings in Austin this month.
The first explosion occurred on March 2, when a man was killed after he found a package on his front steps, which then detonated. The blast was investigated initially as a suspicious death, and later as a homicide.

Seventeen-year-old Draylen Mason died in a similar fashion 10 days later. A woman in her 40s, believed to be the teen’s mother, was also injured.

Hours after the second explosion occurred, police reported a third blast, confirming that a 75-year-old Hispanic woman was injured.

Shortly after authorities announced a $115,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person or persons responsible for the previous explosions on Sunday, a fourth explosion, believed to be caused by a trip wire, occurred.

Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said at a news conference that police responded to an explosion at 8:32 p.m. local time on Sunday in an Austin neighborhood. Two men were transported to hospital with non-life threatening injuries, and community members were encouraged to stay inside while authorities investigated.

“We want to put out the message that we’ve been putting out: Do not touch any packages or anything that looks like a package. Do not even go near it at this time because given the darkness, we have not had an opportunity to really look at this blast site to determine what has happened,” he said. “But it’s obvious that it’s an explosion. It’s obvious that it’s caused significant injuries to two people.”

Lee did not describe the packages used in the explosions but told previously PEOPLE: “They look legitimate enough to handle.”

People who receive a suspicious package should call 911 or 512-974-2000.

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