Flammable devices found in Blanco school locker room

Authorities form a perimeter around Blanco Middle School following the discovery of a suspicious object (KXAN Photo/Kylie McGivern)
Authorities form a perimeter around Blanco Middle School following the discovery of a suspicious object (KXAN Photo/Kylie McGivern)

BLANCO, Texas (KXAN) — Two flammable devices were found in a Blanco school boy’s locker room Friday afternoon. “The [Austin police] bomb squad was able to render them non-dangerous here at the scene,” Lt. Ben Ablon said at a 4:40 p.m. press conference.

APD’s bomb squad responded to Blanco Middle School after authorities found what was initially described as a possible explosive device early Friday afternoon, leading to a safe evacuation of all students. A male student was taken into custody by juvenile authorities.

The school was searched by an Austin police bomb squad dog and declared safe. Lt. Ablon said that the principal took the devices out of the school herself. When asked why the principal put herself in harm’s way, Ablon replied, “She said she was protecting her kids.”

The principal, Keitha St. Clair quickly learned the severity of the situation when she ran into the 8th grade student police believe to be responsible. “He came to me immediately and said Mrs. St. Clair I’ve made a big mistake,” she recounted. “One [device] looked about the size of a prescription bottle that was wrapped in duct tape and the other was about a half foot long PVC pipe wrapped in duct tape.”

Authorities did not specifically say what type of flammable devices were recovered.

Earlier Friday afternoon, officials at the scene analyzed photos of the suspicious device and put in place a 200-foot evacuation perimeter around the school.

According to the Blanco Independent School District, it was reported to school officials at the middle school that a student brought an explosive device to school. After investigating, the school did find a suspicious item and the Austin Police Department’s Bomb Squad was called in to assist.

Students were evacuated to the elementary school gym, according to a 2:20 p.m. update. The district released students to their parents at the entrance to the elementary school gym.

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