In the aftermath of the Austin bomber – who killed himself early Wednesday morning as police closed in – people are searching for meaning. In the New York Times on Thursday, an editorial ruminated on what the bomber and the investigation says about racism in a city that brands itself as progressive.
But if we put aside the apparent need for a narrative, what we’re left with is a true anomaly of sorts that we haven’t fully come to terms with. There are, thankfully, relatively few incidents like the one Austin just experienced in which the randomness of terror is the most salient feature.
KUT Austin’s Jimmy Maas says the search for motive continues, focusing on a community just north of Austin, and that investigators have found enough evidence to tie the suspect to the five explosions and one unexploded package around the Austin area.
The suspect’s family members, he says, have remained fairly quiet.
“Yesterday we waited outside their home for a long period of time in the morning and then lingering into the afternoon,” he says. “We were told by an APD detective that they were not going to come out and say anything officially. They were going to release something through the police. But the bombing suspect’s aunt in Lakewood, Colorado did talk to a Denver TV station and she sort of read a default statement for the family.”
Maas says investigators are working on a motive.
“The problem is,” he says, “without an actual suspect alive, there will be a limited opportunity to really narrow down the exact answer to that question.”
Chief Brian Manley has served as the interim police chief since Art Acevedo left for Houston, and some officials are now calling for the city to make his post permanent.
Written by Jen Rice.