Explosion Rocks Nashville: ‘Intentional’ but Meant to Limit Casualties

Emergency personnel work near the scene of an explosion in downtown Nashville, Tenn., Frid
AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

Update — 5:24 P.M. EST: Authorities have found human remains near the explosion site in downtown Nashville, sources tell the Associated Press. Read Breitbart News’ full report below: 

The explosion that rocked a mostly empty street in downtown Nashville, Tennessee, early on Christmas Day seems to be both intentional and meant to limit casualties, officials say.

The bomb went off at around 6:30 a.m. on Friday in what FBI and local officials confirmed was an “intentional act,” Fox News reported.

According to authorities, gunfire was heard ahead of the bomb blast outside an AT&T building in Nashville’s downtown area between First and Second Avenues. The shots fired call came in about an hour before the blast.

Once police arrived on the scene, officers heard a loudspeaker blasting a message from a van warning, “If you can hear this, evacuate now.”

Surveillance video of the explosion seems to reveal the pre-recorded message warning people to evacuate the area:

Police began going door-to-door to alert people to flee the area before the blast went off. At least two officers were injured by the bombing, one slightly and a second experiencing hearing loss.

The early timing of the explosion coupled with the pre-recorded warning shows that the event was planned to keep casualties to a minimum and result mostly in property damage, as opposed to death.

The Nashville police immediately brought bomb-sniffing dogs to the area to look for more bombs, but none were found.

“We’re putting everything we have into finding who was responsible for what’s happened here today,” FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Matt Foster said during a press conference. Nashville Police Chief Drake added that his investigators “don’t feel there’s any concern to the downtown area” anymore.

There have been no casualties reported by local hospitals.

NBC noted that President Trump is being kept informed about the investigation:

Video makes the street at ground zero of the blast look like a war zone:

Nashville Democrat Mayor John Cooper is already taking heat for joking about the incident. Cooper told the media that authorities were on the scene to “make sure this is the only explosion that’s gonna happen in Nashville today,” and then laughed that the gushing water mains lend a dramatic flair to the scene.

The Nashville Police also released a photo of the RV they think was used to transport the bomb to ground zero.

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