As we reported earlier today, Andrew Schneck, 25, a Houston man released early last year after a 2015 conviction on explosives charges, was arrested again Saturday night, when he was caught planting explosives at the base of a Civil War statue commemorating Richard Dowling in Hermann Park.
According to background information provided by the Houston Chronicle, Schneck is remembered by one high school classmate as being “disconnected from reality.”
According to the Chronicle:
One friend who knew Schneck from their years together at Memorial High School in Spring Branch ISD described him as an awkward loner who never had a girlfriend and seemed to struggle with social interactions.
“I can’t even think of a single friend he had, to be perfectly honest,” he said.
He was nicknamed Ace from his initials.
“None of this is surprising,” the former classmate added. “He seems a bit disconnected from reality.”
According to the report, a park ranger saw Schneck kneeling at the statue with two boxes that had wires sticking out of them. Worse yet, he allegedly tried to drink the liquid explosives when the ranger caught him, but spit it out:
Residents living on Albans Road, between Hazard and Wilton streets, were urged 10 a.m. to leave their homes, according to an emergency alert from the city of Houston. Decision was made “out of an abundance of caution,” said Larry Satterwhite, an assistant Houston police chief who oversees the Homeland Security Command.
The alert warned residents that disposing of the material could cause loud noises, smoke and damage to nearby property.
The source of the commotion was a single house at 2025 Albans, according to the Houston Police Department.
Investigators were in and out the house all morning. By 9:15 a.m., FBI agents had set up a blue tent on the front lawn, presumably to review evidence. An agent wheeled a large plastic bin labeled “sample collection” toward the roped-off house.
Satterwhite said “significant hazardous materials” were found at the home, but didn’t say what type they were.
“It’s a lot,” he said. “There’s a significant amount of material in them … Some very hazardous materials were found.”
The explosives are set to be detonated in a clear spot in which the gas has been shut off sometime Monday afternoon.
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