Stephen Nicholas Broderick is the suspect in the fatal shootings of three people in Austin, Texas, on April 18, 2021. The 41-year-old Broderick is a former Travis County Sheriff’s Office detective who was accused of sexually assaulting a child in 2020. Austin Police said Broderick should be considered armed and dangerous.
The shootings happened in Northwest Austin in the 9600 block of Great Hills Trail near the Arboretum shopping center, police said at a Sunday afternoon press conference. According to authorities, the deadly shootings occurred just before 12 p.m. local time. No one else was injured and the suspect fled from the scene. Broderick was last seen wearing a black hoodie and a baseball cap, police said.
Interim Austin Police Chief Joseph Chacon identified Broderick as the suspect being sought by police during a press conference about 2:30 p.m. Chacon said, “I will be putting his name out because it is a matter of public safety because at this point he is still not in custody.” Chacon said all three victims, who have not yet been identified, were adults. Two of the victims were Hispanic women and one was a Black man, Chacon said.
Here’s what you need to know about Stephen Nicholas Broderick:
1. Police Said the Shooting Was a ‘Domestic Incident’
At this time the Great Hills Trail scene is still active. We are still asking residents to shelter in place and report suspicious activity. While a suspect is still at large it appears this is a domestic situation that is isolated and there is no risk to the general public. -PIO8
— Austin Police Department (@Austin_Police) April 18, 2021
Police initially responded to the scene after receiving a call of an active shooter situation, but later said on Twitter the gunman knew the victims in the shooting and it was not a random attack. The first tweet from the department said, “APD is currently on scene of an active shooting incident at Great Hills Trail and Rain Creek Parkway. All residents are advised to shelter in place and avoid the area.”
Austin Police then tweeted, “At this time the Great Hills Trail scene is still active. We are still asking residents to shelter in place and report suspicious activity. While a suspect is still at large it appears this is a domestic situation that is isolated and there is no risk to the general public.”
Authorities said the shooting remains under investigation and no other information, including how the suspect knew the victims, has been made public. Austin-Travis County EMS said on Twitter that CPR was performed on the three victims, but all three were pronounced dead at the scene.
2. Police Fear Broderick Could Try to Take Hostages
Austin Police Chief Chacon provided an on scene brief today, regarding the incident at Great Hills Trail and Rain Creek Parkway. Please see attached photo of the suspect, Stephen Broderick, 41 years of age, black male who is 5 feet and 7 inches tall. https://t.co/HQu5bOwhlc pic.twitter.com/EVDU64Rph2
— Austin Police Department (@Austin_Police) April 18, 2021
Police asked Austin residents to remain on alert, saying Broderick is armed and dangerous. Chacon, the city’s interim police chief, told reporters they are concerned Broderick could try to take hostages.
The Austin Police tweeted, said Stephen Broderick is a 41-year-old Black male who is 5 feet 7 inches tall.
3. Broderick Was Arrested in June 2020 on Charges Accusing Him of Sexually Assaulting a Teen Girl at a Home in Elgin, Texas
Media briefing. @Austin_Police Interim Chief Chacon says shooting and reverse 911 happened this morning at apartment complex near Arboretum. Suspect: Stephen Nicholas Broderick, 41. Still searching for this man. 3 people dead. APD concerned about hostages. MORE: @KXAN_News pic.twitter.com/KsIig6oCkV
— Josh Hinkle (@hinklej) April 18, 2021
Broderick was arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service on June 6, 2020, and charged with felony sexual assault, according to an Austin American-Statesman article from the time of his arrest. Broderick is accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl at a home in Elgin, Texas. The case was investigated by the Texas Department of Public Safety, the newspaper reported.
According to Travis County Jail records, Broderick was initially held on $100,000 bail. Court records on the Travis County website show the case is still pending. Broderick was released on bond in late June and was indicted on the sexual assault charge in November. 2020. Broderick was charged with sexual assault of a child, family violence, which is a first-degree felony. If convicted, he faces 5 to 99 years, or life, in prison.
According to Travis County records, Broderick’s trial is set to begin on May 6, 2021, in the 299th District Court of Travis County. It is not clear if he has hired an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
4. Broderick Was Placed on Administrative Leave by the Travis County Sheriff’s Office After His 2020 Arrest
Broderick was placed on administrative leave without pay by the Travis County Sheriff’s Office, where he worked as a detective, after his 2020 arrest, KVUE reported at the time.
Broderick was promoted to detective in February 2019, according to a Facebook post from the sheriff’s office union. Other details about his career as a law enforcement officer were not immediately available.
The Travis County Sheriff’s Office has not commented about Broderick’s arrest in the sexual assault case or about him being identified a suspect in the Austin triple homicide.
5. Broderick’s Wife Filed for a Protective Order After His Arrest
Broderick’s wife filed for a protective order against him after he was arrested in 2020, according to Travis County court records. The protective order against Broderick was granted, records show.
A protective order against the victim in the sexual assault case was granted by a Travis County judge before Broderick was released on bail, court records show. Other details of the conditions of Broderick’s bail were not immediately available.
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