HOUSTON, Texas — City of Houston emergency management officials ordered the evacuation of a residential block in an upscale neighborhood where suspected bomb-making materials were found. The evacuation follows an “all night enforcement operation” carried out by the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF).
Federal agents executed a search warrant at a home in the affluent Rice University area of the city after a day-long stakeout, Breitbart Texas reported Sunday evening. Neighbors told Breitbart Texas this is the second time in four years this has happened at the same home.
— Houston Police (@houstonpolice) August 21, 2017
“I would never expect something like this in this neighborhood,” David King said. “I have always felt completely safe here.”
The alert from Houston officials warned neighbors that disposing of the materials found in the home could cause loud noises, smoke, and damage to nearby property, the Houston Chronicle reported Monday morning.
FBI officials told reporters from KTRK ABC13 they will be conducting “controlled explosions of hazardous material” they found inside the home.
In 2013, federal agents raided the same home searching for chemicals that could be used to make “tear gas or nerve gas,” the local newspaper reported. The agents later determined the material to be a military-grade explosive. Court records obtained by Breitbart Texas revealed agents found picric acid in a residence at 411 Fall River Road in Houston. The chemical is used to create military-grade explosives.
Agents set up a blue tent outside the home located at 2025 Albans, Houston police reported. Investigators could be seen going in an out of the home all morning before the alert was issued at 10 a.m. local time. Reporters observed a large plastic bin labeled “sample collection” towards the home.
After searching the home for more than 12 hours, units of the FBI Technical Hazards Response Unit and the FBI Evidence Response Team arrived on scene. Houston Assistant Police Chief Larry Satterwhite also arrives as part of the Homeland Security Command.
Following the 2013 raid on this same home, then-22-year-old Andrew Cecil Earhart Schneck pleaded guilty to knowingly storing high explosives. He received a five-year probation for the incident. A judge released Schnek early from his probation in 2016, the Houston Chronicle reported.
The FBI confirmed to reporters they are leading the investigation. The Houston Police Department is also assisting in the operation.
Property tax records obtained by Breitbart Texas show the home is owned by Schneck’s father, Andrew E. Schneck, and Cecily E. Horton. The home’s value is appraised at $2,026,750.
Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with additional information obtained from court records by Breitbart Texas.