Federal authorities say 63 year old Anthony Quinn Warner of Antioch, Tennessee died when the Nashville Christmas morning bomb went off.
“He was present when the bomb went off and he perished in the bombing,” said Don Cochran, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee.
Tips from the public helped authorities initially identify Warner as a suspect. The Tennessee Highway Patrol discovered a vehicle part from the RV with a Vehicle Identification Number linking it to Warner. The RV was parked outside of an AT&T facility, though authorities have not said whether they believe the telecommunications company may have been a target. The blast caused extensive damage to phone and internet coverage throughout the region, causing communication blackouts for 911 centers in surrounding counties, leaving customers throughout the state without service and exposing vulnerabilities in infrastructure.
“In between a digitized female voice giving warnings to evacuate the area, there was music” said police officers on the scene who recalled hearing “Downtown” a 1964 song by Petula Clark.
According to the Tennessean, Warner grew up in Antioch and attended Antioch High School, graduating in the mid-1970s before settling down in the same community and working various IT jobs.
But in just the past month, Warner appeared to put his affairs in order. He transferred ownership of the home where he had lived for decades. He informed a regular business client he would no longer be working. Property records show on the day before Thanksgiving, Warner transferred the title of his longtime Bakertown Road home to a Los Angeles woman. The transaction, a quitclaim deed that did not require the woman’s signature, was made for $0.
Steve Fridrich, who owns Fridrich & Clark Realty, said Warner was hired four or five years ago as a contractor to provide IT services for the business. Warner repaired the company’s computers and set up machines for new employees.
“In December he sent us an email saying he’d no longer be working for us,” Fridrich said.
Warner didn’t give a reason.
The company reached out to the FBI after learning through news coverage that Warner was a person of interest in the case. Agents visited the office Saturday evening, FBI spokesman Jason Pack confirmed.
Warner hadn’t had a run-in with authorities since 1978, when as a young adult he was charged with felony drug possession. He served two years of probation. Warner does not appear to have a public presence on social media or other websites.
Neighbors who have lived by Warner for decades say he rarely left home, instead spending much of his time working in his yard. He kept to himself, but would speak to his neighbors, engaging in small talk before going on his way.
Steve Schmoldt and his wife have lived next door to Warner for 25 years. He described Warner as “low-key” and friendly, though “some people would say he’s a little odd.”
“You never saw anyone come and go,” Schmoldt said of Warner’s home. “Never saw him go anywhere. As far as we knew, he was kind of a computer geek that worked at home.”