Nearly two weeks before the suspected Austin bomber used one of his makeshift devices to end his own life, federal agents obtained video of him purchasing the supplies he used to make his exploding packages.
A string of blasts left Austin residents in a panic for nearly three weeks, with homemade package bombs detonating at homes and a FedEx facility in the area. The spate of attacks sparked a massive, multi-agency manhunt, which led authorities to Fry’s Electronics in north Austin.
Surveillance video obtained by KXAN sees alleged serial bomber Mark Conditt milling about the store for 20 minutes, walking up and down an aisle marked “Electrical Components.”
Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives obtained the clips nearly two weeks ago as part of an investigation that began March 2 — the same day 39-year-old Anthony Stephen House was killed after a package left on his doorstep exploded.
Authorities requested all receipts and surveillance footage for every person who’d purchased items similar to parts found in the makeshift bombs at different stores in the area, Fry’s Electronics manager Jen Meyer told KXAN.
She said agents first turned up at Fry’s “about a week and a half ago,” adding that they’ve returned “almost daily since.”
Fry’s Electronics invoices show a single credit card purchase from Conditt on Feb. 27, only three days before the first bomb killed House. The receipt reveals he purchased 10 resistors, 5 battery cases, and additional “electrical components,” Meyer said. She later learned those pieces had been consistent with those used to create the exploding parcels.
Agents were back in the store as recently as Tuesday, after they discovered surveillance video of Conditt inside a FedEx office store, shipping his deadly packages to Austin. They wanted more information on his purchases.
“He looked like several customers we have in the store every day,” Meyer said. “So, it just made me think it could have been anybody that shops in our store on a daily basis and it made me want to them any way we could.”
Conditt died after detonating a bomb inside his own vehicle as authorities closed in on him near a Red Roof Inn in Round Rock. He left behind a 25-minute recorded confession, but there is still no known motive in the attacks, which left two people dead and at least four injured.