A man was arrested in Tennessee after driving around in a box truck that was playing an audio message similar to the one that was heard before a vehicle exploded in downtown Nashville on Christmas Day.
According to a statement from The Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office, members of a nearby church and customers at a convenience store “heard a box truck driver play audio Sunday similar to the audio heard before the Nashville explosion Christmas Day.”
The sheriff’s office did not go into detail about what the message said specifically.
The driver of the truck was identified as 33-year-old James Turgeon. Police say that they did not find any explosives on the truck, but Turgeon was still charged with two counts of felony filing a false report and one count of tampering with evidence.
Detective Sgt. Steve Craig said that Turgeon damaged the wiring of the speaker system “intentionally, resulting in the tampering with evidence charge.”
There was also reportedly a child in the vehicle when it was finally intercepted by police.
Turgeon was arrested after the truck shut down Highway 231 South in Lebanon, near Cedars of Lebanon, a Tennessee State Park, on Sunday afternoon.
As of Sunday, Turgeon was being held on a $500,000 bond at Rutherford County Adult Detention Center.
Despite the fact that no explosives were found, authorities are still taking the incident very seriously because the recording was similar to the one heard in Nashville before the bombing on Christmas day. It is also suspicious that the incident happened within days of the initial attack, and in the same state.
The Nashville attacker was identified as 63-year-old Anthony Quinn Warner.
FBI agent Doug Korneski previously told CNN that there is no indication that there was anyone else involved in the attack, but this recent incident with James Turgeon could provide clues about a possible connection. Thus far, police sources are denying that there is any connection between the two events, despite their strange similarities.
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director David Rausch said that there was no connection, except for the fact that it was a possible copycat.
“There is no connection other than the individual taking advantage of the situation,” Rausch said, according to Fox17.
Korneski said that the FBI has not determined a motive in the Nashville bombing.
“These answers won’t come quickly. 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,” Korneski said.
At least 8 people were reported to be injured in the explosion, but the warning allowed most residents in the area to evacuate before the blast occurred. While the motive is still unclear, the target of the explosion appears to be an AT&T building in the city. The blast resulted in power and telephone communication outages in large sections of the city, but as of now most service has been restored.
Typos, corrections and/or news tips? Email us at [email protected]