MOYOCK, North Carolina — Investigators identified the man who lit a truck on fire and drove it into a North Carolina law firm as 56-year-old Alan Boyd Lanier of Amelia Court House, Virginia. Police called Friday evening’s fire an arson-suicide.
“After detectives examined the truck [a gold-colored 1999 Chevrolet] it was apparent that Lanier had also manufactured an explosive device that did not detonate,” Currituck County Sheriff Susan Johnson said. “Once the truck was cleared and removed from the building there were several propane tanks, 30 gallons of gas in the bed and ten gallons inside the cab of the truck as well as several propane tanks.”
Details about Lanier’s possible motive have not yet been released.
Both the The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) were called to assist in the investigation.
“It’s very unnerving,” attorney Edward O’Neal told WTKR.com. “He got out of the truck in that parking lot and went back and lit the bales of hay that were in the back of that truck and they were flaming. The truck was fully engulfed and he got back in it and drove it into the building. It almost went completely through the building.”
Police said Lanier drove the burning truck into Twiford’s Law Firm at about 5:30 Friday evening after the last employee walked out for the night.
This is a developing story.