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'Copycat' driver of box truck 'playing ANOTHER spooky message urging people to evacuate' is arrested 30 miles from where RV blew up in Nashville but no explosives are found in the vehicle

 State and federal law enforcement agencies detained the driver of a suspicious box truck just outside of Nashville on Sunday night after fears of a possible copycat attack two days after a similar vehicle was used in a bombing in the city. 

The driver of the box truck was detained on Sunday as he was driving from Rutherford County into Wilson County some 30 miles outside of Nashville, according to The Tennessean

The driver was detained by deputies from the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from their counterparts in neighboring Wilson County.


A search of the box truck found no explosive devices. 

The arrest was made just hours after a Tennessee highway was closed amid reports of a truck with PA system telling people to evacuate the area.

The Wilson County Sheriff's Office tweeted: 'Highway 231 South from the Cedars of Lebanon State Park to Richmond Shop road is currently shut down due to a suspicious vehicle.' 

It comes just two days after the Nashville bombing in which a recreational vehicle blew up on a mostly deserted street and was prefaced by a recorded warning advising those nearby to evacuate. For reasons that may never be known, the audio switched to a recording of Petula Clark's 1964 hit 'Downtown' shortly before the blast. 

A Tennessee highway was on Sunday closed amid reports of a truck with PA system telling people to evacuate the area. Footage from the scene shows a white truck on an empty road surrounded by police cars

A Tennessee highway was on Sunday closed amid reports of a truck with PA system telling people to evacuate the area. Footage from the scene shows a white truck on an empty road surrounded by police cars

A police robot is pictured inspecting the truck Sunday after police said it 'played audio similar to what was heard before the Christmas Day explosion in Nashville'

A police robot is pictured inspecting the truck Sunday after police said it 'played audio similar to what was heard before the Christmas Day explosion in Nashville'


Police on Sunday confirmed that Anthony Quinn Warner, 63, is a person of interest in the Christmas explosion. Warner is believed to have died when an RV blew up outside Nashville's AT&T building, leaving three injured. 

He had experience with electronics and alarms, according to public records, and had worked as a computer consultant for a Nashville realtor. 

The five responding officers gave their accounts of what happened Friday as investigators continued to chip away at the motive of the RV bombing on a mostly deserted street just after it issued the recorded warning advising people to evacuate.  

Footage from the scene Sunday shows a white truck on an empty road surrounded by police cars. 

The truck had told people to evacuate via a PA system, WSMV reports.

Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement the truck had been 'playing audio similar to what was heard before the Christmas Day explosion in Nashville.'

They said the truck had been parked outside a convenience store in Rutherford making the announcement before making its way to Wilson County.

Police were called at 10:30am local time and then located the vehicle. 

Rutherford County Sheriff's Office said in a statement: 'Sheriff’s deputies in Rutherford and Wilson Counties are investigating a box truck parked at a convenience store playing audio similar to what was heard before the Christmas Day explosion in Nashville.

'The driver traveled from Rutherford County into Wilson County where he was stopped by deputies and detained.

'As a precaution, nearby residents were evacuated during the active investigation.

'Rutherford County dispatchers received a call about 10:30 a.m. about the white box truck parked at Crossroads Market in Walter Hill. Deputies located the truck and made the traffic stop.

'Rutherford and Wilson County Sheriff’s Office and the Tennessee Highway Patrol are working together in the ongoing investigation.' 

The Christmas Day attack in Nashville, which damaged an AT&T building, continued to wreak havoc on cellphone service and police and hospital communications in several Southern states.  

Investigators shut down the heart of downtown Nashville’s tourist scene — an area packed with restaurants and shops — as they shuffled through broken glass and damaged buildings to learn more about the explosion. 


Police said the truck had been parked outside a convenience store in Rutherford making the announcement before making its way to Wilson County. Police were called at 10:30am local time and then located the vehicle

Police said the truck had been parked outside a convenience store in Rutherford making the announcement before making its way to Wilson County. Police were called at 10:30am local time and then located the vehicle

Mayor John Cooper has enforced a curfew in the downtown area until Sunday via executive order to limit public access to the area. More than 40 buildings were affected.

According to Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake, police officers responded on Friday to a report of shots fired when they encountered the RV blaring a recorded warning that a bomb would detonate in 15 minutes.

Police evacuated nearby buildings and called in the bomb squad. The RV exploded shortly afterward.

On Sunday police described how the RV played an ominous warning about the impending explosion and the song 'Downtown' by Petula Clark in the minutes before the blast went off.

Speculation is growing that the AT&T building was intentionally targeted in the Nashville Christmas Day bombing as the FBI probes rumors that the main person of interest in the attack, identified by police as Anthony Quinn Warner, harbored deep paranoia about 5G technology. Pictured: Investigators dig through the wreckage on 2nd Avenue North

Speculation is growing that the AT&T building was intentionally targeted in the Nashville Christmas Day bombing as the FBI probes rumors that the main person of interest in the attack, identified by police as Anthony Quinn Warner, harbored deep paranoia about 5G technology. Pictured: Investigators dig through the wreckage on 2nd Avenue North 

Speaking to CBS News' Face the Nation on Sunday, Nashville Mayor John Cooper said he suspects that the AT&T building was targeted in the attack

Speaking to CBS News' Face the Nation on Sunday, Nashville Mayor John Cooper said he suspects that the AT&T building was targeted in the attack

The FBI is said to be investigating whether Warner may have been motivated by a paranoid belief that Americans are being spied on with 5G technology.   

Nashville Mayor John Cooper on Sunday said he suspects that the AT&T transmission center was intentionally targeted in the attack.  

One man whose business was destroyed in the blast told WZTV he'd spotted a similar RV parked in the area multiple times in the past few weeks, suggesting that Warner may have 'staked out' the site.  

Several neighbors of Warner's home on Bakertown Road in Antioch described him as an 'oddball' who posted 'No Trespassing' signs around the property and was often seen tinkering with a TV antenna on the house.  

They also said he had an RV matching the one used in the attack parked on the property, as seen in Google street-view images from last year. 

The FBI was said to have received two tips concerning Warner prior to the explosion, including one from a person who reported that he was making bombs in his RV in August 2019. 

DailyMail.com revealed that the $160,000 home had been transferred for free to 29-year-old Michelle Swing on November 25 - but she claims she was unaware of the exchange.      

A man whose business was destroyed in Friday's explosion came forward on Sunday to suggest that Warner had been 'staking out' the area. 

Peter Gibson, owner of Pride and Glory Tattoo, said he's seen an RV parked outside his parlor several times in the past few weeks. 

'I can't say if it was that one, but it was very similar,' Gibson told WZTV.  

'Whoever it was, they'd been staking out and they'd been doing their laps and their routine, practicing for a couple of weeks, it seems.'   

Friday's blast emanated from a white RV parked outside the AT&T building on 2nd Avenue at 6.40 am. The explosion injured three people and caused severe damage to the city's downtown area. 

Cops had been called to the area around 6am following reports of shots fired. 

They arrived to find no evidence of a shooting but instead encountered the RV, which was playing a recording of a woman's voice warning that it would explode in 15 minutes. 

Six responding officers who rushed to evacuate the area have been hailed as heroes for their quick efforts in the face of grave danger. 

They are: Officers Brenna Hosey, James Luellen, Michael Sipos, Amanda Topping, James Wells and Sergeant Timothy Miller. 

Five of the officers described their version of events at a press conference on Sunday morning, revealing that the RV played the song Downtown by Petula Clark before it detonated.  

Luellen said he arrived at the scene first and scoped out the building where gunshots were reported, finding now evidence of gunfire. 

Hosey arrived soon after, at which point both officers heard the recording coming from the vehicle.  

'There's a large bomb within this vehicle, your primary objective is to evacuate,' Luellen quoted a woman's voice as saying.  

'I looked at Officer Hosey just to verify we heard the same thing, and then it started over,' he said. 

Moment bomb goes off in Nashville as police clear area
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Emergency personnel work near the scene of an explosion in downtown Nashville on Friday

Emergency personnel work near the scene of an explosion in downtown Nashville on Friday

A law enforcement member walks past damage from an explosion in downtown Nashville

A law enforcement member walks past damage from an explosion in downtown Nashville

Six officers who responded to the scene moments before the explosion have been hailed as heroes for their efforts to evacuate the area. Pictured: Officer Amanda Topping
Officer Michael Sipos
Officer Richard Luellen
Officer Brenna Hosey
Sgt. Timothy Miller
Officer James Wells

Six officers who responded to the scene moments before the explosion have been hailed as heroes for their efforts to evacuate the area. Pictured (clockwise from top left): Officer Amanda Topping, Officer Michael Sipos, Officer Richard Luellen, Officer James Wells, Sergeant Timothy Miller and Officer Brenna Hosey

Nashville police introduce officers who helped evacuate the area
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Luellen said he reported the audio to his supervisor, Sgt Miller, who ordered the deployment of all available units and instructed officers to evacuate the area. 

Minutes later the RV started playing a three-minute countdown, followed by 'Downtown', Luellen said. He said all the shades were down on the vehicle, which didn't have a tag.  

Then came the explosion, which knocked Luellen to the ground and activated an airbag in another officer's vehicle. 

Officer Wells described hearing a 'voice from God' which told him to check on his partner Topping seconds before the blast went off, throwing him backward. 

Topping said she sprinted to Wells and the pair ran for cover in a doorway. 

'I've never grabbed somebody so hard in my life,' Topping said, her voice shaking with emotion. 

Wells said that EMTs tried to take him to the hospital for examination, but he convinced them to let him go and focus their efforts on the three reported injuries. 

Each of the officers described how they called loved ones to assure that they were okay before news of the explosion reached the media.   


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