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BOSTON -- ABC News -- Authorities are close to identifying a suspect in the deadly Boston Marathon bombing, an official in Boston told ABC News.

ABC News' Boston affiliate, WCVB, reported a source had said a suspect has already been identified and an arrest is imminent. Surveillance video taken from cameras at a Lord & Taylor along the marathon route helped identify the suspect, WCVB said.

A pair of blasts erupted Monday afternoon near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three people and injuring more than 170 others.

Authorities said they have been analyzing thousands of photos of the event and tracking down as many leads since the bombing. Tuesday ABC News reported part of a pressure cooker bomb had been recovered from the scene with wires, shrapnel and a circuit board. That evidence has been sent to the FBI lap in Quantico, Virginia for analysis, officials said.

Published in National News

Boston - AP - One of the explosive devices used in the Boston Marathon attack appears to have been placed in a metal pressure cooker packed with nails and ball bearings, CBS News has learned, as authorities appealed to the public Tuesday for amateur video and photos that might yield clues to the bombing.

The details on the explosives emerged as the chief FBI agent in Boston vowed “we will go to the ends of the Earth” to find those responsible.

A law enforcement source told CBS News senior investigative producer Pat Milton that one of the explosive devices appears to have been placed in a metal pressure cooker (a metal kitchen pot with a locked-down top) which had been placed in a black nylon bag or backpack. Investigators also found pieces of an electronic circuit board possibly indicating a timer was used in the detonation of the bomb.

A law enforcement official told CBS News that the two bombs that exploded were made to look like discarded property. It is still unknown if one or both bombs were in garbage cans. One may have been on the sidewalk.

The bombs were described as “low explosive,” but with “anti-personnel” packing. The official said there were apparently things like BB’s, ball bearings and nails in the bombs. This is consistent with doctors reporting shrapnel pulled from victims.

A doctor treating the wounded said one of the victims was maimed by what looked like ball bearings or BBs. Doctors also said they removed a host of sharp objects from the victims, including nails that were sticking out of one little girl’s body.

At the White House, meanwhile, President Barack Obama said that the bombings were an act of terrorism but that investigators do not know if they were carried out by an international organization, a domestic group or a “malevolent individual.”

He added: “The American people refuse to be terrorized.”

Across the U.S., from Washington to Los Angeles, police stepped up security, monitoring landmarks, government buildings, transit hubs and sporting events. Security was especially tight in Boston, with bomb-sniffing dogs checking Amtrak passengers’ luggage at South Station and transit police patrolling with rifles.

“They can give me a cavity search right now and I’d be perfectly happy,” said Daniel Wood, a video producer from New York City who was waiting for a train.

Similar pressure-cooker explosives have been used in Afghanistan, India, Nepal and Pakistan, according to a July 2010 intelligence report by the FBI and Homeland Security. Also, one of the three devices used in the May 2010 Times Square attempted bombing was a pressure cooker, the report said.

“Placed carefully, such devices provide little or no indication of an impending attack,” the report said.

The Pakistani Taliban, which claimed responsibility for the 2010 attempt in Times Square, has denied any role in the Boston Marathon attack.

The two bombs blew up about 10 seconds and around 100 yards apart Monday near the finish line of the 26.2-mile race, tearing off limbs, knocking people off their feet and leaving the streets stained with blood and strewn with broken glass. The dead included an 8-year-old boy and a 29-year-old woman.

“We started grabbing tourniquets and started tying legs. A lot of people amputated,” said Roupen Bastajian, a state trooper from Smithfield, R.I., who had just finished the race when he heard the explosions.

Federal investigators said no one had claimed responsibility for the bombings, which took place at the world’s best-known distance race, held every year on one of Boston’s biggest holidays, Patriots’ Day.

“We will go to the ends of the Earth to identify the subject or subjects who are responsible for this despicable crime, and we will do everything we can to bring them to justice,” said Richard DesLauriers, FBI agent in charge in Boston.

He said investigators had received “voluminous tips” and were interviewing witnesses and analyzing the crime scene.

Gov. Deval Patrick said that contrary to earlier reports, no unexploded bombs were found.

Boston police and firefighter unions announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to arrests in the bombing.

Law enforcement sources told CBS News’ Milton that a Saudi Arabian man who was being questioned by investigators is not being considered a suspect at this time, and it appears that he was a spectator who was injured in the attack.

At a news conference, police and federal agents repeatedly appealed for any video, audio and photos taken by marathon spectators, even images that people might not think are significant.

“There has to be hundreds, if not thousands, of photos and videos” that might help investigators, state police Col. Timothy Alben said.

Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis said investigators also gathered a large number of surveillance tapes from businesses in the area and intend to go through the videos frame by frame.

“This is probably one of the most photographed areas in the country yesterday,” he said.

At least 17 people were critically injured, police said. At least eight children were being treated at hospitals. In addition to losing limbs, victims suffered broken bones, shrapnel wounds and ruptured eardrums.

Dr. Stephen Epstein of the emergency medicine department at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center said he saw an X-ray of one victim’s leg that had “what appears to be small, uniform, round objects throughout it — similar in the appearance to BBs.”

Dr. Richard Wolfe, chief of Emergency Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, told CBS News Tuesday that the injuries sustained in the bombing have been primarily shrapnel injury in the lower extremities.

“Some hand injuries, but mainly devastating injuries to limbs,” Wolfe said. “We have at least two amputations and a number of very serious wounds that require fairly aggressive care.”

Eight-year-old Martin Richard was among the dead, said U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch, a family friend. The boy’s mother, Denise, and 6-year-old sister, Jane, were badly injured. His brother and father were also watching the race but were not hurt.

Krystle Campbell, a 29-year-old restaurant manager, also died in the bombing, WBZ Radio confirmed Tuesday afternoon. William Campbell told the AP that his daughter had gone with her best friend to take a picture of the friend’s boyfriend crossing the finish line.

Neighbor Betty Delorey said Martin loved to climb neighborhood trees and hop the fence outside his home.

About 23,000 runners participated in this year’s Boston Marathon. Nearly two-thirds of them had crossed the finish line by the time the bombs exploded, but thousands more were still completing the course.

Demi Clark, a runner from North Carolina who said she was the crossing finish line as the first blast went off, told CBSNews.com “blood was everywhere instantly.”

“Nobody knew what to do - after the second one went off we were like, ‘the city’s under attack,’” Clark said.

The attack may have been timed for maximum bloodshed: The four-hour mark is typically a crowded time near the finish line because of the slow-but-steady recreational runners completing the race and because of all the friends and relatives clustered around to cheer them on.

Davis, the police commissioner, said authorities had received “no specific intelligence that anything was going to happen” at the race. On Tuesday, he said that two security sweeps of the route had been conducted beforehand.

Patriots’ Day commemorates the opening shots of the American Revolution, at Concord and Lexington in 1775.

Richard Barrett, the former U.N. coordinator for an al Qaeda and Taliban monitoring team who has also worked for British intelligence, said the relatively small size of the devices in Boston and the timing of the blasts suggest a domestic attack rather than an al Qaeda-inspired one.

“This happened on Patriots’ Day — it is also the day Americans are supposed to have their taxes in — and Boston is quite a symbolic city,” said Barrett, now senior director at the Qatar International Academy for Security Studies.

Published in National News

   BOSTON (ABC) - The death toll in the Boston Marathon bombings has increased to three people, according to the Boston Police commissioner.

   Among the dead was an 8-year-old boy, law enforcement sources told ABC News. The Boston Globe identifies the dead child as Martin Richard.

   "This cowardly act will not be taken within stride," Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis said this evening. "We will turn every rock over to find the people who are responsible for this."

   At least 133 people were injured, including several children with severe trauma, when bombs exploded almost simultaneously near the marathon finish line, police said.

   Doctors at two Massachusetts hospitals said some of the victims underwent amputations and were suffering from burns, while others had sustained injuries from shrapnel to their lower extremities.

   "Everything we saw was ordinary material that could have been propelled by the device," said Dr. Ron Walls, chair of emergency medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

FBI Taking Charge of Investigation

   The FBI has taken the lead in the investigation and at a news conference tonight said there are no suspects in custody.

   Despite reports of law enforcement officials questioning a potential person of interest at Brigham and Women's Hospital, where many of the injured were taken, Davis urged caution.

   "There's no suspect at Brigham and Women's Hospital," Davis said. "There are people we are talking to, but no suspect."

   ABC News can confirm that one of the people law enforcement officials are talking to is a 20-year-old Saudi national at a Boston hospital. Sources tell ABC News that he is here legally on a student visa and that his visa is clean with no apparent criminal history.

   Boston police tonight, at a news conference, said that there are people they are talking to, but no suspects.

   Two bombs exploded near the race finish line on Boylston Street shortly before 3 p.m. The area was crowded with runners and spectators, and thousands of runners were still completing the race.

   Davis declined to say whether he thought the devices were acts of terrorism, but said, "You can reach your own conclusion based on what happened."

   According to law enforcement sources, the first bomb exploded at the Marathon Sports running store and blew out windows in four nearby buildings, injuring 15 to 20 individuals. The second blast occurred about 50 to 100 yards away, severely injuring more bystanders, Davis said.

   The working theory about the bombs among Massachusetts law enforcement is that they were small, crudely made devices hidden in bags or backpacks, planted either during the race or immediately prior and detonated remotely, possibly with a cellphone. Officials have subpoenaed cellphone records.

   More than 400 National Guardsmen in attendance at the marathon helped secure a perimeter around the scene.

   One witness described the scene as being like a "war zone," while a doctor who was standing nearby said he immediately started treating people with severe leg injuries.

   "Six or so people went down right away on my left, mostly with leg injuries. One gentleman had both legs below the knee blown off," Dr. Allan Panter, a physician who witnessed the event, told ABC News. "One girl I treated, I could not find any obvious injury to her torso, but she arrested. She was between 24 and 30.

   "The people had singed facial hair and stuff. Most of the injuries were on their legs," Panter said. "I was 20 feet away, one storefront down. My ears were ringing. Everything blew out from the storefront."

   Police initially said a third explosion occurred at John F. Kennedy Library in Boston, but later said it was related to a fire. No one was injured at the library, police said.

   The Federal Aviation Administration issued a temporary flight restriction over the area of the explosion.

   Police were asking for all video footage of the finish line at the time of the explosion.

   An emergency room doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital told ABC News that the hospital had performed several amputations, particularly on victims whose legs were injured. Many of the victims were runners still wearing numbers on their shirts, the doctor said.

   He described the injuries as "shrapnel-type wounds" possibly caused by "pipe bombs," though police have not confirmed that description.

   Earlier, a trauma nurse from Massachusetts General Hospital told ABC News that medical workers had set up a temporary morgue at a medical tent at the road race and were treating patients with severed limbs and children with severe burns.

   In the immediate aftermath of the explosions, Boston EMS personnel could be seen shuttling the injured out of the blast area on wheelchairs. Several of the victims were bleeding from the face.

   A doctor who was in the medical tent about 150 yards away from the explosion said it looked like a "war zone," with "lots of blood," and said that all physicians were told to go to the scene and help the injured.

   Boston police set off a third explosion before 4 p.m. and were sweeping the area, checking dozens of bags left behind by runners who evacuated the area after the explosions. Officials also tested for chemicals to help determine what kind of device was used, according to police.

   Attorney General Eric Holder was in touch with the FBI in Boston and President Obama was notified of the blasts. All of Boston's police force was ordered to report to duty.

   Security precautions were taken elsewhere beyond Boston. In Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House was closed to pedestrians and there was heightened security.

   In Boston, police told people in area of the blasts to avoid trash cans, according to witnesses.

   The explosions erupted on what is usually a festive day in Boston. It is designated Patriots Day and most offices are closed for the celebration and the marathon.

   Debris from the explosions could be seen scattered throughout the spectators' stands and finish line area of the marathon as emergency personnel cleared the area.

   Video of the explosions showed plumes of white smoke pouring into the air above the street where runners were.

   More than 26,00 runners were registered to compete in this year's marathon. The marathon clock was at shortly after four hours at the time of the explosions, which is the average time it takes runners to complete the Boston race, potentially putting the greatest number of competitors at risk.

 
Published in National News

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