Wichita Falls police urge caution in wake of Texas package explosions

WICHITA FALLS - In the wake of the deadly package explosions that killed two people in Austin, police departments across the nation are urging residents to be vigilant of unexpected deliveries.

The Wichita Falls Police Department says you might want to think twice before picking up an unknown package at your door.

"Between me and my roommate, we probably have two or three packages a week, mainly through Amazon." Wichita Falls resident Philip Spencer said.

Getting packages at the doorstep is nothing new for Spencer but sometimes, he says they get deliveries they don't recognize.

"It's envelopes, packages and we just kind of set them aside or call the post office and be like 'hey, there's someone else's mail here,'" Spencer said. "If it's not addressed to us then we don't open it." 

WFPD Sgt. Harold McClure is encouraging residents to be extra aware of their surroundings. Especially if an unexpected package arrives.

"If I saw a package that had excessive amount of tape on it, any kind of oily residue, obviously anything protruding from it or if just in general it didn't look like a normal package, then I would probably not open it," Spencer said.

"Just stop for a second. Take notice of what's around you, what you're looking at," McClure said. "If something doesn't look right, if something doesn't feel right just back away from it."

McClure says if a delivery is not addressed to someone at your home or has no markings on the packaging, those should serve as red flags. He says it's also important to look out for your neighbors.

"If they see someone in this particular case dropping off the package, that just doesn't look like it's coming from a mail carrier, doesn't look like it's coming from some type of company that delivers packages be mindful of that. Take notice of that," McClure said.

People like Spencer say they're always keeping an eye out. "If they saw anything that looks suspicious just report it," Spencer said. "I mean it's not worth trying to investigate it yourself." 

As for suspicious package reports, Sgt. McClure says those calls don't come in frequently but they're not uncommon. In addition, he urges to call 911 if you come across a suspicious package.

For more tips on what you should look out for when it comes to suspicious packages, click here.

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