Austin Police have arrested one man in connection with a vehicle explosion Wednesday at a St. David’s Medical Center parking garage.
Raymond Luke Garner, 38, is charged with a third degree felony for possession of components of explosives on Thursday. Police would not release information on his criminal history or if he was the owner of the vehicle.
A background check of a person with the same name and age, showed a Jonestown address and a previous charges for speeding and possesion of controlled substances and marijuana.
The parking garage at St. David’s Medical Center reopened Thursday morning after a vehicle exploded Wednesday afternoon.
No one was injured and the hospital was not damaged.
“I think it was very fortunate,” Jeff Greenwalt, assistant police chief of the Austin Police Department, said Wednesday night. “We saw the video from inside the parking garage. If that happened and if anybody happened to be in the area, it would have been a very different message tonight, and I think we were very lucky,”
The hospital at 919 E. 32nd St. was not evacuated, but ambulances were diverted on Wednesday night to other hospitals. The hospital is no longer diverting patients to other hospitals.
Police did not consider this an ongoing threat, Greenwalt said.
Austin Police and Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services were called to Garage 1 at the hospital at 5:23 p.m. after the Austin Fire Department responded to a 911 call and determined that this was not a typical car fire, Greenwalt said.
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Police are continuing to investigate the cause of the fire, he said. They have located a person connected to the vehicle, and that person is cooperating, Greenwalt said. Police questioned one person Wednesday night, and said he was at the hospital for a legitimate reason. It is nit clear if that person was Garner.
The FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives also have been on the scene to help with the investigation.
St. David’s updated its Twitter account on Thursday morning to say the parking garage had reopened and people could collect their cars.
“The safety of our patients, families and employees is our number one priority, and we are grateful for the swift efforts of our first responders,” said Todd Steward, chief executive officer of St. David’s Medical Center.
Police said the investigation would take some time.
“It’s our intention to determine whether this explosion was an intentional act or some sort of an accident,” Greenwalt said. “Unfortunately, those answers don’t come quick.”
The police bomb squad team and special operations command with the fire department and EMS “have to go painstakingly slow to make sure they are not missing any evidence,” Greenwalt said.