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Two people injured in suspected Austin, Texas, blast -- police

By Jon Herskovitz
Reuters

March 18. 2018 11:24PM




AUSTIN, Texas — A suspected explosion wounded two men, thought to be in their 20s, authorities in the Texas capital said on Sunday in an incident that comes after three parcel bombs exploded in city earlier this month, killing two people.

Police have not said if there is any connection between the explosion on Sunday and the parcel bombs.

Witnesses told local television station KXAN that they heard an explosion that rattled windows in a residential Austin neighborhood and police said on their Twitter feed that two men were taken to a hospital with unknown injuries.

Investigators are still looking for the culprits behind the three parcel bombs that exploded in three separate neighborhoods of the city, killing two African-American males and leaving a 75-year-old Hispanic woman fighting for her life.

More than 500 federal agents have joined Austin police in the homicide investigation.

Earlier on Sunday, Austin police said whoever was responsible for the bombs was trying to send a message and should contact authorities to explain any motive.

“We are not going to understand that (message) until the suspect or suspects reach out to us to talk to us about what that message was,” Austin Police Chief Brian Manley told a news conference.

Manley said authorities were still trying to identify the ideology behind the attacks, and police were also investigating the bombings as possible hate crimes.

The first bombing on March 2 killed Anthony Stephan House, a 39-year-old black man. It ripped a hole in a home entrance wall and damaged the front door.

A bomb last Monday morning killed Draylen Mason, a 17-year-old African American teenager and promising musician. It also injured his mother. A few hours later, a third bombing injured the 75-year-old Hispanic woman, who has not been named.

Police have received more than 735 calls about suspicious packages since the three parcel bomb attacks, but authorities had not found any that posed a security risk, Manley said.

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)


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