Skip to content

Who is Tanner Horner? FedEx Driver Confessed to Killing 7-Year-Old – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

31-year-old Tanner Lynn Horner is facing aggravated kidnapping and capital murder charges in connection to the abducting and killing of a 7-year-old girl, Athena Strand, whose body was found Friday night.

Athena Strand vanished from her home in Paradise in Wise County Wednesday, prompting a large search with around 200 volunteers from the community.

Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin said during a press conference Friday night that Horner confessed to killing the 7-year-old girl.

7-year-old Athena Strand

Who is Tanner Horner?

Horner is an independent contractor who was working with FedEx. Authorities say they learned early on that the FedEx delivery driver had been to the Strand’s home at about the time Athena disappeared and worked with FedEx to identify and locate him.

He was taken into custody where he confessed to abducting and killing the 7-year-old girl, according to authorities. He then directed officers to her body.

After first giving police a false lead on where to find her body, Athena’s body was found southeast of Boyd, about 10 miles from where she was reported missing.

Wise County Sherrif Office

FBI Agent Jim Dwyer said authorities believe Strand died about an hour after being abducted and has digital evidence and statements.

According to police, Horner is from Lake Worth and does not appear to have any previous criminal history, although the Lake Worth Police Chief J.T Manoushagian tweeted Friday night that Horner does not reside in the city.

FedEx released a statement saying their thoughts are with the family, and the company is cooperating fully with law enforcement.

“Words cannot describe our shock and sorrow at the reports surrounding this tragic event. First and foremost, our thoughts are with the family during this most difficult time, and we continue to cooperate fully with the investigating authorities. At this time, any further questions should be directed to law enforcement.”

Horner is currently being held in jail in lieu of a $1.5 million bond. Information on whether or not he had an attorney who could speak on his behalf was not made available.

This story is developing, for the latest updates please refresh or check back.