Boston Police: No Arrest Made in Marathon Bombing Case

The Associated Press reports that officials have detained a possible suspect in connection with the explosions.

By | Boston Daily |
boston marathon bombing

Photo by Regina Mogilevskaya.

Wednesday, April 17:

UPDATE 2:38 p.m.

Boston Police have debunked rumors that there was an arrest made in the Boston Marathon bombing case.

Officials from the FBI also released the following statement, asking the media to be careful what they report before getting confirmed information from the organization:

Contrary to widespread reporting, no arrest has been made in connection with the Boston Marathon attack. Over the past day and a half, there have been a number of press reports based on information from unofficial sources that has been inaccurate. Since these stories often have unintended consequences, we ask the media, particularly at this early stage of the investigation, to exercise caution and attempt to verify information through appropriate official channels before reporting.

UPDATE 1:40 p.m.

Reports have surfaced that officials have a significant lead and may even have a suspect in connection with the Boston Marathon bombings. According to CNN, an unnamed source told reporters that “the breakthrough came from analysis of video from a department store near the site of the second explosion. Video from a Boston television station also contributed to the progress.”

A spokeswoman from Mayor Tom Menino’s office told Boston Globe reporters that footage obtained by officials from the Lord and Taylor surveillance cameras located across the street from one of the bombing locations also helped in the latest breakthrough in the investigation.

Reports also came through from the Associated Press about a suspect possibly being arrested by the FBI:

A Tweet from the Twitter account of the Boston police Department announced that there would be a media briefing held at 5 p.m. on Wednesday with FBI officials to update reporters on the investigation.

Tuesday, April 16:

UPDATE 5:52 p.m.

In a Tweet sent from the White House’s official Twitter account, it was announced that President Barack Obama would be traveling to Boston following the events that unfolded during the Marathon on Monday to attend an interfaith vigil at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross:

 

UPDATE 5:23 p.m. 

Officials are going through the evidence collected from the scene of the Boston Marathon bombings “with a fine toothed comb,” but they say the investigation is still in its infancy.

During a follow-up briefing with reporters on Tuesday, Rick DesLauriers, special agent with Boston’s FBI division, who is heading the investigation, said officials have received more than 2,000 tips in the 24-hours following the explosions along the marathon route, but more information is still needed. “The person who did this is someone’s friend, neighbor coworker or relative. Someone knows who did this…cooperation [from the public] will play a crucial role,” he said.

DesLauriers said at this time there have been no claims of responsibility for the blast that injured 176 people, and killed three others, but FBI agents continue to collect physical items from the scene of the crime on Boylston Street and they have launched an aggressive forensics recovery effort.

The FBI confirmed information that a pressure cooker may have been involved with the explosions, after finding a device at the site. DesLauriers said officials also discovered black nylon fragments, BBs and nails that were possibly contained in a pressure cooker device. He said the devices in both incidents were likely placed inside black backpacks, or bags, before being left in the areas where the blasts occurred.

DesLauriers would not say if it the FBI is looking for an individual, or multiple suspects, in connection with the bombings. “This will be pursued methodically and diligently but with a sense of urgency. This is still in its early, early stages,” said DesLauriers.

Despite the lack of information about who may have been involved with the tragic event, Mayor Tom Menino assured constituents of Boston that the city would not be swayed by an act of terror. “This tragedy is not going to stop Boston…we will not let terror take us over,” he said from a wheelchair while at the press conference.

Investigators will continue to work with local and federal officials around the clock, they said.

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UPDATE 1:30 p.m. 

Reports have surfaced that the devices used in the explosions on Monday during the Boston Marathon were pressure cookers that were allegedly packed with bits of shrapnel and BBs, which once detonated injured 176 people and left three more dead.

According to a report from the Associated Press, the two bombs that went off  “were fashioned out of pressure cookers and packed with shards of metal, nails and ball bearings,” FBI investigators said.

The AP report said:

A person who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation was still going on said that the explosives were put in 6-liter pressure cookers, placed in black duffel bags and left on the ground. They were packed with shrapnel to inflict maximum carnage

Doctors at area hospitals who have been treating victims of the attack say they have pulled shards of metal and other objects from the limbs of patients that they believe were intentionally placed inside some sort of device to inflict as much pain as possible when they exploded.

According to a Boston.com report, Dr. George Velmahos, trauma chief at Massachusetts General Hospital, said some patients had anywhere form 20 to 30 pieces of metal lodged in their body, which were removed by hospital staff. “My opinion is that most of them were in the bomb…I think it’s unlikely they would be so consistent if they were pulled out from the environment,” said Velmahos, during a press conference with reporters. Similar comments were made by doctors from both Boston Medical Center and Children’s Hospital on Tuesday.

In documents recovered by reporters from TheSmokingGun.com, Homeland Security had sent out warnings about these types of devices being used to detonate bombs in 2004. Federal investigators reiterated the warning in 2010, according to the report, after thwarting a potential attack being planned in New York City.

The 2004 DHS report warns of the ‘potential terrorist use of pressure cookers,’ adding that there was ‘continued interest by terrorist organizations to use innocuous items to package improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

Earlier:

Federal, state, and local investigators continue to put all of their resources into trying to piece together what happened along the Boston Marathon route near the finish line after two explosives went off Monday, just seconds apart, killing three people and injuring more than 100 others. But officials say this is the most complex investigation they have dealt with in the history of the Boston Police Department, and they need the public’s help.

“We continue to work shoulder to shoulder with other agencies, and our mission is clear—to bring justice to those responsible for the marathon bombing,” said Rick DesLauriers, a special agent with Boston’s FBI division. “This group of dedicated men and women pledge to do everything possible to get [answers]. This is an active investigation, but there are no known additional threats.”

On Tuesday morning, DesLauriers spoke with reporters alongside officials from the Boston Police Department, Governor Deval Patrick, Senator Elizabeth Warren, U.S. District Attorney Carmen Ortiz, Mayor Tom Menino, and investigators from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, during a press conference at the Westin Copley Hotel, to give updates about Monday’s bombing.

Officials said one of the most critical parts of the investigation is gathering photographic and video evidence from the scene in Copley Square, near where the bombs went off. FBI and Boston Police officials are urging anyone with photos of any kind to reach out to them and send them to investigators as they search for clues and any relevant information. “Assistance from the public remains critical [and could] lead to swift conclusions. We commend the public and citizens of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for their help, but we strongly encourage that assistance to continue,” said DesLauriers.

A spokesman for the ATF said that the department was bringing in explosive specialists and bomb technicians to work with the FBI during the investigation.

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis said besides digital photographic evidence, police are using footage from video cameras in the area where the blast occurred. “Even as we were removing victims, officers were assigned to go into local establishments and secure those videos,” he said.

Davis said police and FBI officials will go through “every frame and every video” to determine who was in the area at the time of the explosions. A large section surround the scene of the explosions has been closed off to the public as the investigation continues. The bombs left 176 people injured, some of which had to be sent to South Shore hospitals for treatment, and three people were killed. Davis said 17 victims are currently in critical condition at area hospitals.

While Davis told residents to continue their daily routines, he asked that they steer clear of the cordoned-off crime scene and cautioned that security has been increased all around the city, specifically along the MBTA, where guards and members of the Transit Police Department are checking customers’ bags as they board trains at T stations.

“We want you to live your life, we want you to be vigilant, but there is no reason not to come into the city. [For now] give us a little room in the Copley Square area…but we are trying to turn it back to the businesses as [the] evidence is collected,” said Davis.

President Barack Obama addressed the nation on Tuesday, adding that officials do not know at this time “whether this was an act of an organization or an individual or individuals.” he said the FBI is investigating the “heinous” crime as an act of terrorism.

As of Tuesday morning, no one had claimed responsibility for Monday’s attack at the Boston Marathon. Reports surfaced that federal investigators were at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where they were speaking with a Saudi Arabian patient, but the reason for their presence was not disclosed at Tuesday’s meeting.

Investigators were at a Revere home around 2 a.m. Tuesday, according to Boston.com, where they removed items from the patient’s residence. No more information about why officials were there has been released, but Revere officials said they were investigating a “person of interest.” During Tuesday’s press conference, the FBI would not comment further about the investigation in Revere and whether or not there was a connection to the marathon attack.

Anyone with information, photos, or video footage, is asked to contact the FBI at 1-800-225-5324.