(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
In a late-morning press conference held today, December 28, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) answered media questions regarding the explosion that took place downtown Nashville on Christmas morning.
63-year-old Anthony Quinn Warner has recently been identified as the bomber in the rattling holiday explosion. Warner was found dead after his RV, parked at 166 2nd Avenue, exploded.
According to earlier reports, the explosion damaged over 40 buildings and injured at least eight.
Around 5:30 AM on Christmas morning, authorities were called to the scene after residents reported hearing what sounded like “gunshots.” Warner’s RV then began broadcasting that a bomb would detonate, encouraging an evacuation.
The warning allowed law enforcement to evacuate nearby residents.
The timing and warnings initially suggest that the explosion was not meant to bring about mass casualties.
Significant damage was caused to the AT&T transmission building, causing major interruptions in cellular communication, internet, and 911 dispatch.
During the press conference, TBI Director David Rausch could not speak on the exact size of the explosion or its radius of damage.
However, he stated that objects and substances used for the explosion have been sent to Quantico, Virginia to be analyzed by the FBI.
Tracking Down the VIN Number
“A number of techniques were utilized,” Director Rausch told reporters.
Various pieces like “a puzzle,” Rausch said, were collected and analyzed to read/determine vehicle identifiers such as the VIN number.
Rausch stated that his agency worked closely with Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the ATF to determine the owner of the RV.
Involved agencies were also in contact with the manufacturer to gather useful overall knowledge about the RV.
All agencies are taking on pieces of the puzzle, according to Rausch, and are working to determine what the motivation was behind the explosion.
The TBI is currently conducting interviews and gathering relevant history with various subjects like neighbors and family members of Warner.
The Role of DNA
Tissue gathered at the crime scene was sent to the lab in Quantcio, Rausch stated.
While agencies did not run familia DNA to make the ID, they were able to gather samples from a hat and gloves owned by Warner. These samples were quickly “compared and matched.”
“We are very proud of the work that was done to make that match so quickly,” Rausch said.
According to Rausch, Warner was not on TBI’s “radar,” and the agency was not familiar with him until the incident.
Warner was born in Tennessee on January 17, 1957.
Recently released records reveal that he had a “clean” adult criminal record since 1978 when he was arrested in Nashville for possession of marijuana for resale.
Rausch was not able to go into other details of Warner’s past and personal life, other than saying that the detail of his father working for AT&T is being followed up; at this point, however, it is “all speculation” as to whether or not that played a role in motive.
Warner’s mother, Rausch also added, has been cooperative with efforts of the ongoing investigation.
Anthony Warner (Photo: FBI)