Austin bomb suspect called self a 'psychopath,' congressman says
Mar 26, 2018, 00:34
He left a tape confessing to the bomb-making, but police said there was no apparent motive.
"It is the outcry of a very challenged young man talking about challenges in his life that led him to this point", the police chief said Wednesday night. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Conditt eventually was tracked down through store surveillance video, cellphone signals and witness accounts of a customer shipping FedEx packages in a disguise that included a blond wig and gloves.
Describing the scene in which Conditt was captured, Combs said he'd seen a video of the action, which showed "Austin police officers running towards a vehicle that had an explosive device in it that detonated".
Officers prepared to move in for an arrest.
Before those personnel arrived, the suspect vehicle started to drive away and authorities followed. Conditt ran into a ditch on the side of the road, and SWAT officers approached, banging on his window.
Hanley said one officer then fired his weapon at the suspect. He said Mark Conditt was "polite, very quiet and respectful". He said the Travis County Medical examiner will make that determination, but that the "injuries yhe sustained from the explosion were significant".
Conditt gave no explanation for why he carried out the attacks in the recording, according to sources. Having been home-schooled, the 23-year-old was close to his family, including his sisters. His declared major was business administration, but he did not graduate.
"We are of course grieving, broken and disappointed", Conditt said.
According to a report on TMZ, Austin bomber Mark Conditt blogged that homosexuality is not natural and therefore gay marriage should be illegal. As he neared graduation, he took a government course at Austin Community College and described himself on a class blog as conservative but "not that politically inclined". Later that evening, the police closed Main Street in Pflugerville. Anthony Stephan House, 39, and Draylen Mason, 17, lost their lives from two of Conditt's opened packages that were delivered to their homes in the early part of March. A lot of people didn't understand him and where he was coming from.
A neighbor who watched Conditt grow up said he always seemed smart and polite.
NAACP Austin President Nelson Linder said the manhunt's end was a relief but that the public needs answers on what motivated Conditt, including whether the first two victims were targeted because they are from prominent black families.
Jensen said "the kind of hate that he succumbed to" was not what Conditt believed in during high school.
Conditt's family said in a statement they had "no idea of the darkness that Mark must have been in".
Mason was one of two people killed in the bombing spree, which injured four others, including Mason's mother. The first explosions were from packages left on doorsteps.
Two days after the tripwire blast, the bomber's tactics shifted yet again. A fifth parcel bomb detonated early Tuesday at a FedEx distribution center near San Antonio. "He did not show any remorse, in fact questioning himself for why he didn't feel any remorse for what he did", McCaul said.
The community should still "remain vigilant", Manley said, despite the "described seven explosive devices" being "no longer in play".
ATF Special Agent in Charge Fred Milanowski made the comments at a Wednesday afternoon news conference. But authorities urged continued awareness just in case. Federal Bureau of Investigation agent Chris Combs echoed Milanowski's sentiment, saying "we think we're on top of this, but we just don't know".
Homemade explosives were recovered from Conditt's home in Pflugerville, a community where portions of "Friday Night Lights" were filmed. One was later released. Authorities subsequently said that package contained an explosive that was tied to the other bombings.
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