Authorities have identified Anthony Quinn Warner as the Nashville bomber after matching his DNA to remains found at the scene of the explosion.
“We’ve come to the conclusion that an individual named Anthony Warner is the bomber. He was present when the bomb went off and then he perished,” said Don Cochran, US attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, during a Sunday evening news conference.
DNA taken from the scene was matched to Warner by forensic analysts, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director David Rausch said at the news conference.
Warner, 63, of nearby Antioch, Tennessee, had already been identified as a person of interest in the explosion of a recreational vehicle in downtown Nashville on Christmas morning.
The violence of the explosion was captured in a Nashville police surveillance video posted to Twitter Sunday night. The blast damaged dozens of buildings, injured three people and knocked out AT&T wireless service in and around Nashville.
There is no indication that anybody else was involved and no motive has been determined, said Douglas Korneski, FBI special agent in charge of the Memphis field office.
During a press conference, Korneski declined to comment when asked if the blast could be considered domestic terrorism.
Forensic analysts at the FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia, and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations matched DNA taken from the explosion scene to Warner, Korneski said.
A vehicle ID number from the RV was also a match for Warner, he said.
Korneski said anyone who may have known Warner or encountered him should contact the FBI so investigators can establish a motive.
“These answers won’t come quickly,” he said. “Though we may be able to answer some of those questions … none of those answers will ever be enough for those affected by this event.”
When asked by a reporter if Warner had previously been on law enforcement’s radar, Rausch said, “No, he has not.”
Investigators were able to match DNA samples to Warner quickly because they were able to collect DNA from family members, Korneski said.
This is video of Friday morning's explosion recorded by an MNPD camera at 2nd Ave N & Commerce St. pic.twitter.com/3vaXhoUOAR
— Metro Nashville PD (@MNPDNashville) December 28, 2020
Authorities earlier said they believed Warner’s remains were found at the blast site, according to several law enforcement officials with direct knowledge of the investigation, who spoke to CNN on the condition of anonymity.
The FBI also gathered DNA from Warner’s home, which they began searching Saturday, those sources said.
CNN has attempted to contact Warner’s family members but has not heard back.
Authorities continue to investigate the Christmas morning blast that dealt another blow to a city its mayor says has already had its “hardest year” yet.
Three people were injured in the explosion early Friday and dozens of buildings were damaged. But officials say more people could have been hurt if it wasn’t for the swift response of six police officers who evacuated residents after an eerie recorded message coming from the RV warned the vehicle would explode in minutes.
That’s exactly what happened next. The explosion tore through buildings, shattered windows and left the street littered with branches, glass and flaming debris.