MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – A parked car outside of a restaurant in Tennessee prompted multiple businesses to evacuate, and a major intersection to close early Tuesday morning.
First responders were dispatched to the First Watch restaurant in Murfreesboro at around 9:30 a.m., responding to reports of what onlookers described as a possible bomb attached to the vehicle.
Nearby buildings were evacuated, and several schools were placed on lockdown as investigators assessed the scene. Authorities reported the call resulted in a massive response from local, state and federal agencies.
Leslie Huggins, who was evacuated from a nearby building, told Nexstar’s WKRN that officials “told us there was a bomb threat and basically screamed at us to get out” amid the investigation.
A section of road and a major intersection near the restaurant were also closed off as a precaution for nearly two hours.
Murfreesboro police later cleared the scene after discovering that the “suspicious device” on the vehicle was actually a rubber bumper attached to the passenger side of the car with duct tape and wires.
The car’s owner allegedly told police he attached the rubber bumper to his vehicle — connecting the wires to a suction cup attached to the inside door handle — to “prevent dents.”
“We had a massive, massive response to this location to find out it was a man who was trying to prevent his car from being dented,” Larry Flowers, Murfreesboro’s public safety public information officer, said.
Flowers added that the car owner was across the street from the parking lot the entire time his vehicle was being investigated, standing with other evacuees. He only learned his car was involved after “eventually” answering a call from authorities.
Since there was no intent to cause harm, authorities said the man will not be charged.