Search Ongoing for Man Accused of Fatally Shooting 3 in Northwest Austin – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
A manhunt was underway on Sunday for a former deputy sheriff who was wanted in the fatal shooting of three people in Austin. An official said it was unknown if the suspect was still in town.
Austin interim police chief Joseph Chacon said those who live near the location where the late Sunday morning shooting took place no longer need to seek refuge, but he said they should “remain vigilant.” He said officials would switch the search for Stephen Broderick, 41, from the area to a “cursory search”.
First responders were called to an active shootout on the Great Hills Trail and Rain Creek Parkway near US Highway 183 at 11:42 a.m.
Two women and a man were pronounced dead at the scene, Chacon said.
Chacon said the shooting didn’t take place in a building but didn’t elaborate on where the scene was.
“The victims were all known to this suspect,” said Chacon. “At this point in time, we don’t think this person is targeting random people to shoot. That doesn’t mean they’re not dangerous.”
He tentatively identified the shooter as Stephen Broderick. He was described as being 5-foot-7-inch black with average height, and police said he was wearing a gray hoodie, sunglasses, and baseball cap and should be considered armed and dangerous. It wasn’t clear if he was on foot or in a vehicle.
Chacon said just before 5 p.m. Sunday that they had exhausted all efforts to search the area of the shooting for Broderick and that the existing shelter had been lifted.
He said Broderick was a former deputy to the Travis County Sheriff’s Office in Austin.
“If you have your neighbour’s phone numbers, call them and text them. Check them and make sure they’re okay,” Chacon said, leaving. ”
Austin Police Chief Chacon gave a brief account of the incident on the Great Hills Trail and Rain Creek Parkway today. Please see attached photo of suspect Stephen Broderick, 41 years old, black male, 5 feet and 7 inches tall. https://t.co/HQu5bOwhlc pic.twitter.com/EVDU64Rph2
– Austin Police Department (@Austin_Police) April 18, 2021
Police said the shooting was targeted but did not provide additional details about how the alleged shooter knew the victims.
Chacon said preliminary information suggested Broderick may have been a former law enforcement officer, but he didn’t provide any additional details.
“Obviously this is a tragedy. We have people who lost their lives out here,” said Chacon. “We will do our best to conduct the best possible investigation and get this person into custody as soon as possible, and hopefully with no further loss of life.”
Travis District Attorney Jose Garza said in a statement that Broderick was arrested last June for sexually assaulting a child and was released on $ 50,000 bail. He said prosecutors filed a motion to revoke that bond on Sunday and are actively helping law enforcement agencies prosecute Broderick.
Sheriff’s spokeswoman Kristen Dark tells the Austin American-Statesman that Broderick, a property crime detective, resigned after being arrested.
The newspaper also reports that Broderick’s wife filed for a warrant and a divorce shortly after his arrest.
Chacon said Broderick was suspected of killing two Hispanic women and a black man. He said Broderick knew the victims but hadn’t elaborated on how or a motive for supplying the shootings. Chacon also said that a child was involved but that the child has been found and is safe.
Filming took place in the Arboretum, a popular shopping destination with numerous retail outlets and apartment complexes near wooded hills.
Brenda Torres said she drove by when she saw a young boy in a car and a black man lying face down on the floor.
“I saw the little boy pointing down the street,” said Torres. “There was someone lying on the floor. I thought someone had just fallen off or something. When my light turns green and I drive, I see one police car after another heading for where I was.”
Pictures from the scene showed a large presence of emergency services, including dozens of police cars. There are also several ambulances and two SWAT trucks on site, as well as two police helicopters.
Josh Katzowitz, who was shopping at nearby Trader Joe’s, said police and ambulances “flocked” to the area as he left. He didn’t hear any shots.
“The cops had their guns out,” he said. “Some had pistols, some had rifles, and they buckled on bulletproof vests. Suddenly there were ambulances, sirens and police cars. There were cops from all over the place.”
Austin-Travis County’s Emergency Services commander Mike Benavides warned people in a tweet that any 911 calls that require a medical response in close proximity would be treated in an alternative response model other than an ambulance.
Drivers have been asked to avoid the area and both directions of loop 360 from Spicewood Springs to US 183 have been closed.
Anyone who sees the suspect will be asked to call 911. Information about the shooting can be reported to the Austin Police Department at 512-974-8477 or email [email protected] Tips can also be provided through the Crime Stoppers app or by calling 512-472-8477. A $ 1,000 reward will be offered for information leading to an arrest.