The Austin Police Department recently shared the date, time and location of all rock-throwing incidents in the city since the first one was reported in June 2014. After 13 new incidents were reported last weekend, police are now investigating a total of 83 cases.
All of the incidents have taken place on Interstate 35 in the 21-mile stretch from Wells Branch Parkway to the north to just past Slaughter Lane to the south. Most of the cases have been through the central city, between Riverside Drive and Airport Boulevard.
The data reveal some interesting patterns. The majority of vehicles that were hit — 68 of them — were heading northbound. Most incidents happened on a Saturday or Sunday between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m.
Notably, some incidents happened within a few minutes but were miles apart from each other, which raises the question of whether there is more than one rock-thrower.
Police have declined to share certain details, citing worries that it could compromise their investigation.
A note about this map: When we searched the addresses where police say the incidents happened, Google Maps sometimes gave us different locations (the addresses more closely resemble the blocks along the highway’s frontage road, police said), so we’ve adjusted the location of the markers on this map to better reflect police’s information.
The result shows us that the weekend incidents went as far north as Rundberg Lane and stretched south of Slaughter Lane. The majority of the cases were confined to the four miles between the Riverside Drive and Airport Boulevard exits. All but two of the 13 cases reported Friday through Sunday occurred while the victims were driving north.
In total, police are now investigating 83 rock-throwing incidents since the first one was reported almost two years ago.
Have you witnessed any of these incidents? If so, what did you see?
Share your answers in the comments below if you were a victim of rock throwing, witnessed an incident or know someone who has been affected. You can also share your photos with us by sending them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Expect another gorgeous day Friday in the Austin, with weather very similar to Thursday’s.
Temperatures will be in the 60s until about 10 a.m., when the city will begin to rapidly warm up, the National Weather Service said. We’re expected to reach a high of 84 degrees in the late afternoon.
It’s not all good news today: Texas has declared Friday an Ozone Action Day for the Austin metro area, which includes Travis, Williamson, Hays and Bastrop counties. That means those particularly sensitive to ground-level ozone, such as elderly people, those with asthma or other lung diseases and young children, should minimize the amount of time they spend outdoors.
Ozone is a smog ingredient produced by a combination of sunlight and pollutants, such as those from gas-powered engines. People can take steps to mitigate ozone by avoiding the use of gas-powered equipment, using public buses and trains, combining errands to avoid multiple car trips, and not idling a vehicle’s gas engine.
Looking forward, Saturday’s weather is expected to be a little cloudier and a little warmer, with a low of 66 degrees and a high of 84, the National Weather Service said.
Plan for muggy weather on for Mother’s Day on Sunday. There’s just a slim chance — 20 percent — of thunderstorms throughout the day, so plan for the possibility of scattered rain.