AUSTIN, Texas — Austin police are increasing the reward money being offered for information leading to an arrest in the recent package explosions.
During an APD press conference, Interim Chief Brian Manley said the reward is increasing from $50,000 to $100,000. The governor is also offering a separate reward of $15,000.
At the beginning of the press conference, Manley stated they believe the recent explosions were meant to send a message.
“The person or persons understands what that message is and are responsible for constructing and delivering these devices,” he said. “We hope that person or persons is watching and will reach out to us before anyone else is killed out of this event.”
Manley added the materials used to make these devices are very volatile they are extremely dangerous and difficult to keep stabilized.
"No matter how careful you are the materials used in these devices represent an ongoing hazard and a danger to children and families near the bomb maker," he said.
He also addressed community concerns APD did not initially think the first incident was part of a larger plan.
“We simply did not have anything available to us that day to make us believe that this would happen again in our community and would be linked to two additional bombs,” he said.
However, he added they knew even if it was a singular incident, it was a significant incident and APD called in all the federal partners to assist in the investigation.
The first explosion happened at 7 a.m. on March 2 killing 39-year-old Stephan House. The second and third explosions happened March 12. The second one killed 17-year-old Draylen Mason and injured his mother. Hours later, the third explosion injured a 75-year-old hispanic woman.
Manley also said there are more than 500 federal agents on this case. Austin Police, ATF, and FBI have received 435 leads, all of which are being followed up on. It has led to 236 interviews of individuals.
Anyone with information about the explosions is asked to reach out to APD through Facebook, Twitter or by calling 911 or the APD Tip Line at 512-472-8477.
WATCH | Full press conference below: