Live Updates: 3 Dead, Several Dozen Injured After Boston Marathon Explosions
Eric Randall, Steve Annear, Yiqing Shao, Regina Mogilevskaya, and Kaitlyn Johnston contributed to this report.
Two explosions went off in quick succession near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing at least three and sending more than 100 others to the hospital, some with critical injuries. We’ve been updating this post with information as it arrived.
If you have photos, updates, or stories regarding today’s events, please share them with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Those looking for information on victims should call 617-635-4500, and those with information should call 1-800-494-TIPS.
Tuesday, April 16:
10 a.m. Officials met at the Westin Copley Hotel to give updates about the bombing that occurred along the Boston Marathon race route on Monday, April 15.
In what Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis described as the “most complex [investigation] in the history of the department,” officials from the FBI, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives urged anyone with photos and information to contact them to help further the investigation into what happened. Governor Deval Patrick said “assistance from the public remains critical” as the investigation continues.
Besides digital photographic evidence, police are using footage from video cameras in the area. “even as we were removing victims, officers were assigned to go into local establishments and secure those videos.” He said they will go through every frame and every video to determine who was in the area at the time of the explosions.
Davis said 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 the investigation is ongoing, officials told Boston residents to continue their daily routines, but to stay clear of the Copley Square areas they continue to search for leads. “We want you to live your life, we want you to be vigilant, there is no reason not to come into the city, but we do have a threat…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.
Investigators dispelled rumors about the number of explosives found at the scene of the attack, reaffirming that there were only two devices, both of which went off, and there were no additional threats.
Rick DesLauriers, Boston Special Agent with the FBI, said authorities will “go to the ends of the earth” to find the individuals responsible for “this despicable crime.” The FBI has taken the lead role in the investigation of the bombing. Officials have set-up 1-800-CALL-FBI for anyone who has information, visual images, or details regarding the explosions along the Boston Marathon route and elsewhere. “No piece of information or detail is too small,” according to FBI officials.
Mayor Menino reminds anyone with concerns about their family members or friends who were at the race to call the Mayor’s 24-Hour Hotline at 617-635-4500. A resource center has also been set up, and is located at the Park Plaza Castle where counseling and displacement help is available t the public.
An interfaith prayer service is being planned in Boston, according to the Governor, however, no specific details are available at this time as to when and where that will happen. Updates on that service will likely be available later in the day.
Monday, April 15:
8:50 p.m. Governor Deval Patrick said Boston will be open on Tuesday—but it won’t be business as usual—and residents and visitors should expect heightened security, as well as random bag checks along the MBTA routes. During a press conference with FBI officials and Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis, Patrick said the investigation is now in the hands of the FBI and the National Guard has secured the crime scene where the explosions took place. The area, on Boylston Street, will have limited acces for the next day or two, he said. Patrick urged people to “be in a state of heightened vigilance,” and report any suspicious activity.
Police Commissioner Davis confirmed that three people were killed by the blasts along the Marathon route on Monday, and denied media reports that there was a suspect in question at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. The FBI is handling this as a criminal investigation, with the potential to become a terrorist investigation. Davis said “this was a powerful blast” which resulted in “very serious injuries” but he would not confirm the extent of those injuries.
“This cowardly act won’t be taken in stride and we will turn every rock over to find those responsible for this,” Davis said.
8:35 p.m. Hours after the tragedy that occurred along the end of the Boston Marathon route, officials from the Boston Atheltic Association issued a statement about the incident calling it “a sad day for the city of Boston.”
The Boston Athletic Association extends its deepest sympathies to all those who were affected in any way by today’s events. Today is a sad day…for the running community, and for all those who were here to enjoy the 117th running of the Boston Marathon. What was intended to be a day of joy and celebration quickly became a day in which running a marathon was of little importance. We can confirm that all of the remaining runners who were out on the course when the tragic events unfolded have been returned to a community meeting area. At this time, runners bags in Boston which remain unclaimed may be picked up by runners presenting their bib number or proof of race participation at the Castle, at 101 Arlington St., in Boston. At this time, we are cooperating with the City of Boston, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and all federal law enforcement officials. We would like to thank the countless people from around the world who have reached out to support us today.
6:20 p.m. It’s pretty moving (and logistically, quite helpful for those stranded) to see the long, long list of those offering rooms and aide to any runners or others stuck in town because of the explosions, which has been set up via a public Google Doc.
6:15 p.m. President Obama spoke from the White House at about 6:10 p.m. “The American people will say a prayer for the people of Boston tonight,” he said, adding:
We still do not know who did this or why and people shouldn’t jump to conclusions before we have all the facts. But make no mistake. We will get to the bottom of this and we will find out who did this and why they did this. Any responsible individual and any responsible groups will feel the full weight of justice.
He praised local first responders, calling them a reminder “that so many Americans serve and sacrifice on our behalf every single day.” And of Boston, he added, “Boston is a tough and resilient town. So are its people. I’m surpremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other, and move forward as one proud city, and as they do, the American people will be with them every step of the way.
6:03 p.m. Steve Annear spoke to several runners near the scene in the aftermath of the explosion:
Mike McMahan was about a football field’s length away, after just finishing up the race, when the first explosion went off. “I was looking back at it,” he says. “It just looked like a poof of grayish, white smoke. But when the second one went off, I saw flames.”
Julie Brady’s daughter was working in the medical tent near Copley Plaza when victims from the explosion were being brought in. “She said they were being brought in, covered in blood and on stretchers,” says Brady. She said it was complete chaos in there.” According to Brady, she was just a ways away from the finish line when she saw one of the explosions. “We were just there and we had just moved,” she says. “And next thing you know—my god—it just went off.”
Julia Riley, who was running in the Boston Marathon for the third time, described the scene near the explosion as “chaotic,” and says people were pushing each other, and screaming to “run” after the one of the explosions went off near the finish line. “It was just unreal. It happened about five minutes after I had picked up a Mylar [at the end of the race],” she says. “They were trying to keep everyone clam in the area, but people were yelling and screaming.”
5:52 p.m. BPD Chief Ed Davis says that no arrests have been made and nobody has been apprehended, this following what appears to be faulty New York Post report saying that “a Saudi Arabian national” had been ID’ed as a suspect. “Honestly, I don’t know where they’re getting their information from, but it didn’t come from us,” a police spokesperson told TPM.
5:47 p.m. Officials have released some numbers about those that were still on the course at the time of the explosions:
More numbers: 4,496 people crossed 40K line but not finish. 1,246 people did not make it to 40K—likely stopped in Newton or dropped out
— Peter Vigneron (@PeterVigneron) April 15, 2013
4:53 p.m. At a press conference, BPD Chief Ed Davis says that they have not found another device (contrary to some reports.) They confirm that there was a third “incident” by the JFK Library in addition to the controlled explosion on Boylston Street, and that police believe it is related to the first two. He says those looking for information on victims should call 617-635-4500 and those with information should call 1-800-494-TIPS. 4:41 p.m. Gov. Patrick released a statement urging people to stay away from the area and reporting that he’s spoken with Mayor Menino and President Obama:
This is a horrific day in Boston. My thoughts and prayers are with those who have been injured. I have been in touch with the President, Mayor Menino and our public safety leaders. Our focus is on making sure that the area around Copley Square is safe and secured. I am asking everyone to stay away from Copley Square and let the first responders do their jobs.
The AP has a source who says that police have found two unexploded devices that they’re working to disable, so yes, please stay away from the area. 4:02 p.m. Boston Police have released their first tally of casualties, reporting
22 23 injured and two dead:
Original: Several witnesses on the scene reported two large explosions and potentially dozens of serious injuries as emergency personel responded en masse to the scene near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Dan Lampariello of @Boston_to_a_T tweeted this photo of what appears to be a large explosion by the Copley
People on the scene report that police are asking people to clear the area quickly as they’re not sure whether it’s safe yet. Check back for updates as we learn more about the scale of the damage. Initial reports suggest that the injuries will be very, very serious. NECN’s Jackie Bruno tweets from the scene that she saw people with missing limbs.