Mayor John Cooper said the six local cops took “swift action” to evacuate people in the city’s downtown area as a parked RV blared a warning that a bomb would detonate in 15 minutes.
“These incredible heroes who ran to danger with uncertain outcomes ahead of them were responsible for so many injuries being saved,” Cooper said in an evening press conference.
The brave cops “took swift action and directed people away to save lives — even at the time when their own lives would have been in peril.”
“They are heroes and I am grateful to them.”
The officers had been responding to reports of “shots fired” in Nashville’s downtown when they came upon the RV and heard the chilling recording.
They evacuated nearby buildings and called the bomb squad — and the vehicle blew up shortly afterward.
Three people were injured in the blast and were in stable condition, officials said.
Human remains were found near the scene, CBS News and The Associated Press reported, citing law enforcement sources.
It’s not yet clear whether the remains are from someone connected to the blast or from a victim. Authorities haven’t said whether anyone was in the vehicle when it blew up.
Asked about the reports of remains, Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake said that “we have found tissues that we believe could be remains.”
The “tissues” still need to be examined, the chief told reporters.
At least 41 buildings were damaged in the bombing, which officials have said was a deliberate act. Authorities said many people had been displaced.
“This morning’s attack on our community was intended to create chaos and fear in this season of hope,” the mayor said.
Authorities are “not going to rest until those responsible for this outrageous and cowardly attack are brought to justice,” Cooper added.
“Nashville’s spirit can’t be broken… We can rebuild and get back to normal.”
A curfew has been imposed in the area affected by the blast until 4:30 p.m. on Sunday.