WACO, Texas -- Texas law enforcement officials are launching a criminal investigation into last month's deadly fertilizer plant explosion.
Investigators have up to now largely treated the West Fertilizer Co. blast that killed 14 people as an industrial accident.
The Texas Department of Public Safety said in a Friday statement that the agency has instructed the Texas Rangers and the McLennan County Sheriff's Department to launch a criminal probe.
DPS Director Steven McCraw says in a statement he wants to ensure "no stone goes unturned" in the investigation.
The plant blew up on the night of April 17 after a fire erupted at the facility in the rural town of West.
Press Release from DPS
Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steven McCraw today directed the Texas Rangers to join McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara in launching a criminal investigation into the fertilizer plant explosion that occurred in West, Texas, on April 17.
“This disaster has severely impacted the community of West, and we want to ensure that no stone goes unturned and that all the facts related to this incident are uncovered,” said Director McCraw.
“The citizens of McLennan County and Texas must have confidence that this incident has been looked at from every angle and professionally handled – they deserve nothing less,” said Sheriff McNamara.
No further information regarding this ongoing investigation will be released at this time.
Three weeks after the disaster in West, DPS Division of Emergency Management officials also continue to work with local, state and federal partners to assess the damages and facilitate recovery assistance to the victims in the community.
For more information about disaster assistance, visit: http://www.disasterassistance.gov/
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