Package Bomb, Believed to Be Destined for Austin, Detonates at Texas FedEx Facility

Police tape marks off the neighborhood where a package bomb went off March 19, 2018, in Austin, Texas, one of several in the Austin area in recent days.
Photo: Drew Anthony Smith (Getty Images)

Updated Tuesday, March 20, 2018, 3:07 p.m. EDT: Apparently there is no second device after all.

On Tuesday morning, San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said that there was a second, unexploded device found at the Schertz, Texas, FedEx location after a first bomb went off.


A spokesperson for the department later backtracked, saying that McManus “misspoke” when he made those comments.

That being said, according to the Washington Post, FedEx released a statement that it had “confirmed that the individual responsible also shipped a second package that has now been secured and turned over to law enforcement.”

“We have provided law enforcement responsible for this investigation extensive evidence related to these packages and the individual that shipped them collected from our advanced technology security systems,” the FedEx statement read.

Updated Tuesday, March 20, 2018, 2:02 p.m. EDT: A second package bomb that did not detonate at a Schertz, Texas, FedEx facility was discovered by police on Tuesday.


As the Washington Post reports, it is believed that the second device could be key in expanding the investigation into the string of bombings that have rocked the state’s capital and set the entire state and nation on edge. The second device, since it did not explode, could provide key evidence to help law enforcement identify the person or people responsible.

Early Tuesday morning, a package bomb that was on an automated conveyor belt at the FedEx center in Schertz went off. No one was injured at the time.


Authorities have not publicly confirmed whether they believe the bomb in the facility was connected to the first four incidents in Austin, which have been described as the work of a “serial bomber.”

However, Schertz Police Chief Michael Hansen did note that investigators were “confident that neither this facility nor any location in the Schertz area was the target.”


San Antonio Police Chief William McManus revealed at a news briefing on Tuesday that the second package had been found, which officials “believe was also loaded with an explosive device that they are working on right now.”


A package that was believed to be en route to Austin, Texas, exploded at a local FedEx facility just outside of San Antonio, prompting officials to look at the case as possibly being connected to a series of blasts that have occurred in the state capital over the past month.


FBI agents were on the scene, which came after four bombings in Austin.

“We believe that the explosion is likely connected” to the earlier explosions, FBI spokesperson Michelle Lee said, according to NPR. 


The package exploded around 12:25 a.m. local time in the sorting area of the Schertz, Texas, facility. One employee was treated and released at the scene.

As noted, it was the fifth explosion of a package bomb in recent days.

After a fourth explosion over the weekend, believed to have been set off by a trip wire, investigators said that a “serial bomber” was behind the attacks that have killed two people and injured multiple others.


“Several local news outlets report the package was coming from Austin and being sent to an Austin address,” Joseph Leahy of member station KUT in Austin reports, according to NPR. “The FedEx facility is about an hour southwest of the city.”


The specific destination of the package, the Washington Post reports, was not disclosed.

Authorities have declined to describe the bombs, citing the investigation, only saying that they were sophisticated devices crafted by someone who knows what they are doing.


Authorities are now encouraging residents or anyone who may see a suspicious package to steer clear.


“We’re even more concerned now that if people see something suspicious, they just stay away from it altogether and contact law enforcement,” said Fred Milanowski, special agent in charge of the Houston division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. “Because if they move that package or if they step on that trip wire, it’s likely to detonate.”

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Breanna Edwards

News Editor at The Root, animation nerd, soca junkie, yogi