Austin package explosions: Police chief issues warning to residents after third bomb

Emergency crews on scene at a fatal explosion in east Austin on Oldfort Hill Drive

He also said police are looking at any link between the three victims.

The first blast Monday, which detonated before 7 a.m., killed a 17-year-old boy and injured a woman.

There was "significant damage" to the porch involved in the March 2 blast as well as at least one of the blasts this morning, Manley said.

The March 2 blast was initially investigated as a suspicious death but is now being treated as a homicide, Manley said.

In an afternoon press conference, interim Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said that all three explosions are likely connected, but could not say if the victims were chosen at random or if they were targeted.

"We cannot rule [out] that hate crime is at the core of this, but we're not saying that's the cause as well", he said.

"We have had two victims that were African American, and the victim of this latest incident was a 75-year-old Hispanic female", the police chief said. "We are conducting a thorough investigation to rule that out". "They're not exceptionally large". He said neither the Postal Service nor private carriers such as UPS or FedEx have any record of delivering the package to the home where Monday's explosion occurred. They were left on doorsteps without a knock or ringing of doorbells.

The attacks took place as Austin hosted thousands of out of town visitors for its annual South by Southwest festival.

As of now, APD has not assigned a motive to any case and Manley said APD is not ruling anything out in order to not limit the investigation. "But be aware, be suspicious".

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Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and his office's Criminal Justice Division are offering up to $15,000 for information leading to arrest of the suspect (s). A 70-year-old woman was injured in that blast. Extra security measures were taken, including additional policing, tougher security checks and brighter street lighting.

The three explosions occurred in different areas in the east of the city.

The first explosion killed 39-year-old Anthony Stephan House on March 2, CBS News reported.

Virginia Ybarra, who lives on the block where the blast happened, says the women who lives in the house is quiet and kind, and sometimes asks for grapefruits from her tree. "I don't even want to leave my daughter no more". Neighbors called police after hearing an explosion inside the house.

"There was a frightful screaming".

"The police chief urged citizens not to panic, but he said: "[It's] imperative that you come forward if you know something. "It's just a grandmother, you know what I mean?"

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has sent staff from both its national response team and reinforcements to bolster local field resources.

Austin Mayor Steve Adler reinforced Manley's sentiments in a tweet warning residents to be cautious about suspicious packages.

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