BLOTTER: Universities, city buildings cleared after receiving threats


AUSTIN

Officials: Universities, city buildings cleared after receiving threats

Texas State University, the University of Texas at Austin and Austin’s municipal and community courts received identical threats on Monday morning.

University of Texas police said around 8:15 a.m. that they had received an unspecified threat, prompting them to warn the public to avoid the campus’ main building.

By 8:30 a.m., police secured the building’s first floor and swept the main building and said it was safe for employees and students to return.

In a tweet at 9:30 a.m., authorities at Texas State said they had also received a non-specific and unverified threat, and that no credible threat had been identified.

The Municipal Court and Community Court downtown were evacuated after receiving a threat and Austin police responded, said city spokesman Bryce Bencivengo.

Investigators cleared both facilities after the Austin police bomb squad completed a sweep, officials said around 10:30 a.m.

Austin police said the threatening email came overnight to the municipal court and referred to explosives.

— American-Statesman Staff

SOUTH AUSTIN

Police investigate body found near grass fire

Austin police are investigating a body firefighters discovered while extinguishing a grass fire off Interstate 35 in South Austin, police said.

The fire was reported at around 6:15 p.m. Firefighters were working a collision near the 7500 block of the highway when they noticed smoke coming from a wooded area to the east. The body was discovered in the course of extinguishing the fire, which was described by firefighters as a grass and trash fire.

Police have only identified the body as a man. The cause of death is not yet known.

“Due to the nature of the fires, it’s going to take a little bit to discover what exactly took place,” said senior police officer Christopher Irwin.

The police investigation is being assisted by the Austin Fire Department’s arson investigators and the Austin-Travis County medical examiners office.

“We’re asking anyone that has any information to please come forward,” Irwin said. “We understand that there’s a large group of individuals who’re possibly back in (the woods).”

Firefighters said Sunday evening that the body was discovered near a transient camp, although that was not confirmed by police Sunday night.

— Brandon Mulder, American-Statesman

MANOR

Officials: Brush fire burns 7 acres

Fire crews from Manor, Pflugerville and Austin put out a brush fire east of Manor after it burned roughly 7 acres Sunday evening, Austin firefighters said.

The blaze, near the 13100 block of Old Highway 20, was near the Carriage Hills subdivision east of Manor, in the same vicinity as another fire that sparked last Sunday.

Crews fought the flames from the ground while the STAR Flight helicopter spent several hours fighting hot spots from above, making 21 drops on the area.

No structures were reported damaged.

— Brandon Mulder, American-Statesman

NORTHWEST AUSTIN

Motorcyclist hospitalized after crash

A man described as in his 30s was taken to St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center after a motorcycle crash Monday morning in Northwest Austin, Austin-Travis County EMS officials said.

Medics responded around 7:34 a.m. to the 5500 block of West Parmer Lane, just southeast of the intersection with McNeil Drive.

The man’s injuries are not expected to be life-threatening, medics said.

— Kelsey Bradshaw, American-Statesman



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