People in Austin, Texas can breathe a short sigh of relief — the Austin bomber has been identified as Mark Anthony Conditt and is no longer a threat. Surveillance video and receipts led to police identifying Conditt as the prime suspect in causing five explosions that injured five people and killed two in the Austin-area since March 2nd.
After a warrant was issued for Conditt’s arrest, authorities found him at a hotel in Round Rock. When authorities showed up, Conditt drove off in his car then killed himself by blowing himself up in his car. Police are warning people to continue to be vigilant, however, because they’re unsure if Conditt had sent any other bombs nor do they know if he acted alone.
The Clues That Helped Reveal His Identity
The police were working hard to identify the person responsible for packages exploding throughout Austin. Then, they realized a common factor in the bombs — they were all made from common household ingredients. Armed with this information, police visited stores in the area to review receipts. Investigative reporter Tony Plohetski told CNN’s New Day that a high ranking law enforcement official told his newspaper, the Austin American-Statesman, that investigators went through receipts and sales records of locally owned stores and big box retailers in Austin.
As a result of their findings, investigators were able to obtain federal search warrants, which lead to discovering the man’s IP address. A review of the IP address showed that the man had been conducting “suspicious” searches on Google, according to Plohetski. Police were also able to develop a sketch of the suspect from interviews with witnesses.
The final clue came in the form of a surveillance video from a mail delivery store. It was a video of Conditt at the mail delivery store shipping an explosive device. This video allowed police to put together the clues and identify Conditt as the suspected Austin serial bomber. Using cell phone technology, police tracked Conditt to a hotel in Round Rock, and upon arriving, they were able to identify his vehicle. As described above, Conditt was never captured, as he drove off and died after detonating a bomb inside his car.