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Arkansas' unsolved package bomb murder

Contractor John Rauch was killed when he opened a package bomb left on his Saline county car port steps nearly 20 years ago.

EAST END (KATV) - A $15,000 reward has been offered for information in the unsolved package bombings that are gripping Austin, Texas, right now.

History tells us a suspect in such cases is usually, but not always, caught.

Package bomb killers are often difficult to catch, in part because key evidence is blown to bits in the commission of the crime.

But most are eventually caught.

Central Arkansas is home to one exception.

In June of 1998, Johnny Rauch found a package left on the carport steps of his East End home.

He brought it inside and made the comment to his wife Linda that he thought it was a joke as he opened it.

(911 operator): "Emergency..."

(Voice of Linda Rauch): "Help!"

"What's the problem?"

"There's a bomb. We just opened it and it exploded! I think my husband is dead!"

Nearly 20 years later, the murder of the 52-year-old contractor remains unsolved despite the efforts of many ATF agents over the years.

ATF agent Bill Buford in 2000: "We believe we have developed a motive that we feel is pretty sound and therefore it has helped us zero in on some specifics as far as suspects are concerned."

ATF Resident Agent in Charge Jeff Brozozowski in 2003: "As far as I'm concerned a fatality bombing is a priority to me regardless of the age of the case. I would love nothing more than to be able to make an arrest in this case tomorrow."

ATF Assistant Special Agent in Charge Stuart Lowrey in 2009: "We have agents assigned to this investigation still. They still look at information. We're still ready to respond to new information."

Resident Agent in Charge Grover Crossland in 2011: "We're reviewing it now and seeing if there is some possible stone that has been left unturned."

The current resident agent in charge of the ATF in Little Rock is Jeff Reed.

Reed has yet to make himself available for an interview.

If he were to parrot what has been said in the past, the case is open and active, it remains a priority and there is a $20,000 reward for information.

The number to call if you have information about this package bomb murder is 1-888-ATF-BOMB.

Air date: March 14th, 2018

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