The suspected Austin serial bomber ordered “exotic” batteries online to use in his explosive devices – which helped state and federal investigators to track him down, according to a report.
“These weren’t your store-bought Duracells,” a senior law enforcement official told NBC News about the batteries, which came from Asia.
The batteries Mark Anthony Conditt used in his devices were the notable feature that allowed investigators to so quickly link the various blasts to the same man, sources told the network.
Authorities also employed a variety of tactics to track down the suspect, who blew himself up in a vehicle as a SWAT team tried at capture him on the side of a road early Wednesday.
Investigators compiled a list of phone numbers and individuals that were in the area of the bombings, using cell-site analysis and high-tech computing systems that can detect patterns of callers, NBC News reported.
Hours before police tried to pull Conditt over on Interstate 35, he turned on his cell phone, allowing authorities to hone in on his location.
Authorities also used traditional surveillance footage from an Austin FedEx store, where he was seen handing over two packages while wearing what appeared to be a blond wig.
Meanwhile, Austin Community College confirmed that a “Mark Anthony Conditt,” who was born in June 1994, was a student from 2010-2012, but never graduated.
The school said it was “working with Austin Police Department to provide any information they need.”
Jeff Reeb, a neighbor of the Conditt family in Pflugerville near Austin, said the 24-year-old was “a very normal kid” and that the family is “extremely nice.”
“I can’t imagine what any of them are going through … just really nice, calm family if you can say it that way,” Reeb told NBC News.
Austin bombing suspect caught on surveillance footage