Newly released 911 calls capture the horror of the Nashville Christmas bombing — from whispered fears of a mass shooting to final reports of buildings collapsing from a “massive f–ing explosive” and “huge fireball.”
The calls released by Metro Nashville Police Department on Wednesday capture the shifting terror as 63-year-old loner Anthony Quinn Warner destroyed 41 buildings and brought down a phone network covering several states with his suicide attack from a music-playing RV.
They show how police first sped to the downtown scene after a number of reports fearing a mass shooter was on the loose.
“There have been three rounds of gunshots inside the building,” one man named Brian told the dispatcher in a terrified-sounding whisper, saying he was “too scared to come out of the apartment.”
“First, about seven or eight minutes ago, and then about five minutes ago … they’re in the building!” he said.
Soon, panicked calls started being made about the ominous 15-minute warnings Warner gave about the imminent explosion, played along with Petula Clark’s “Downtown.”
‘We have a recording out here saying there is a limited time to evacuate this area .. is that law enforcement?” one woman said, saying the recording warning of a “large bomb” was “playing over and over and over.”
“I’m getting dressed, can you please send a police up here? I’m sorry, I’m in a panic,” she said — still ending with a nervous chuckle and a “Merry Christmas.”
After the explosion, one woman called to say that her “entire building just fell down and is collapsing.”
“The roof is collapsing in — oh my God!” she gasped, screaming at others to hurry up out of the building. “Oh my God, I think it’s an explosion.”
One witness had no doubts as to what he’d witnessed.
“There was just a massive f–king explosion downtown with a huge fireball … Oh my God that’s terrifying,” he said.
The dispatcher replied, “Yup — we’re getting a bunch of calls on it.”
Warner was the only person to die in the attack, with witnesses praising hero cops for making sure most people in the area were evacuated.
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