Story Changes Again About Unexploded Devices at Boston Marathon

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by Sharon Rondeau

The two Tsarnaev brothers, suspects in the bombings of the Boston Marathon on Monday, April 15, 2013, hail from Kyrgyzstan, a small republic which is predominantly Muslim

(Apr. 21, 2013) — After first stating that undetonated explosive devices were found following the two explosions at the Boston Marathon on Monday, then retracting the statement, Boston officials appear to be changing their story again.

In an article dated April 21, 2013, Yahoo! News reported of Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:

Davis said earlier police discovered at least four unexploded devices, including one similar to the two pressure cooker bombs used in the twin blasts Monday that killed three people and wounded more than 170 near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

But at a news conference on Tuesday, Davis and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick insisted that only the two devices which exploded were found in the aftermath of the atrocity which killed three young people, one of them an eight-year-old boy, and seriously maimed at least ten others, with another 160 or more also sustaining injuries.  “There are no unexploded bombs,” Patrick had said at the time.

Prior to the press conference, various media had reported that between three and five undetonated explosives had been found.  As late as Thursday, Davis and a Massachusetts representative were quoted as having reported that two unexploded devices were located near the scene.  CNN reported:

Another explosive device found

Authorities in Boston found at least one other explosive device that they were dismantling, Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis said.

Rep. Bill Keating of Massachusetts, meanwhile, said two more were found.

One unexploded device was found at a hotel on Boylston Street near the bomb site and another unexploded device was found at an undisclosed location, Keating, a Democrat and member of the House Homeland Security Committee, said. He called the bombing a “sophisticated, coordinated, planned attack.”

Additionally, several mainstream media outlets reported on Monday evening that a “suspect” or “person of interest” was either “in custody” or “under guard” at a Boston-area hospital and that the person was a “Saudi national.”  Davis denied those reports.

Middle Eastern analysts later stated that the Saudi national had been ordered deported to prevent embarrassment to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia following a search of his apartment in the overnight hours between Monday and Tuesday.  The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) refused to respond to questions about the Saudi national from Rep. Jeff Duncan, stating that they were “not worthy of an answer.”

CNN also reported on Thursday that authorities were looking for “a ‘darker-skinned or black male’ with a possible foreign accent in connection with the attack, according to a law enforcement advisory obtained by CNN.”  Two men in a photo released by The New York Post were allegedly not those the FBI was seeking, as surveillance video released at approximately 5:00 p.m. on Thursday showed two different men walking through the marathon crowds with backbacks who could not reasonably be described as having dark or black skin.

The suspects were named as Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, immigrants from Kyrgyzstan who apparently identified with the Chechen cause against the Russians.  The older brother, Tamerlan, was reported as having become increasingly radicalized during the time since he returned from a six-month trip to Russia.

A marathon attendee had taken photos of the two brothers, among many others, and sent them to the FBI after seeing the surveillance video on Thursday evening.  Another person present when the bombs went off snapped a photo of Dzhokhar walking away from the chaos which ensued.

The two brothers reportedly led police on a high-speed chase overnight from Thursday to Friday after murdering an MIT police officer, firing handguns and throwing explosives out the window of a stolen SUV.

One person calls the FBI video “fake.”  A man identified only as “Gabe” stated that he witnessed the high-speed chase and saw Tamerlan handcuffed and placed into a police car looking unharmed, although a graphic post-mortem photo appears to indicate severe injuries.  The source of the photo is not confirmed.

The Watertown police chief said that one of his officers “tackled him [Tamerlan] in the street” and attempted to handcuff him, but the younger brother sped toward them, hitting Tamerlan and “dragged him a short distance down the street.”  The medical examiner reportedly said that “Tamerlan had so many penetrating wounds when he arrived at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center early Friday that it isn’t clear which ones killed him.”  The photo purported to be taken post-mortem does not show gunshot wounds.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving suspect, was reportedly awake on Sunday evening and responding to questions in writing.  He has not yet been charged.

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