1 Boston Marathon Bombing Suspect Dead, Massive Manhunt For 2nd Suspect; Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev

7:30 PM, Apr 19, 2013   |    comments
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WATERTOWN, Mass. (CBS/AP/USA TODAY) -- Police responded en masse Friday evening after shots were fired in the town were a Boston Marathon bombing suspect was last seen. A man hiding in a boat behind a house has been surrounded and authorities are approaching the situation cautiously.

An undated view of 67 Franklin St. Watertown, Mass. Police have surrounded a man hiding in a boat in the back of the house. 

Boston Mayor Thomas Menino said Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 19, of Cambridge, Mass., the at-large suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing, is the man in the boat, although that is yet to be confirmed by law enforcement.

Shortly after the lockdown was lifted early Friday evening in the town where the at-large Marathon bombing suspect was last seen, journalists reported several shots could be heard. Later Friday evening, reporters said several explosions could be heard at the scene.

Police are approaching the scene cautiously because authorities believe Tsarnaev may have explosive devices.

During a long night of violence, the two suspects killed an MIT police officer, injured a transit officer in a firefight, and threw explosive devices at police during their getaway attempt.

Federal sources believe the suspect who is still alive is either wearing an explosive vest, or has explosives with him, reports national security correspondent Bob Orr.

Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis says the suspect at large is the one seen in the white hat in images of the Boston Marathon suspects released by the FBI Thursday. Davis says he is "armed and dangerous."

Furious manhunt: 1 officer, suspect killed

Police evacuated residents in Cambridge who lived on the same block as one of the suspects, going door-to-door telling people to leave. Police told CBS News it is just a precaution, but they have roped off the area and residents were seen coming out with suitcases.

At one suspect's apartment building, on Norfolk Street in Cambridge, a CBS News producer at the scene witnessed a woman being taken away authorities, being dragged by her arms. It was not known if she was being arrested or resisting being evacuated.

Some time after police evacuated everyone from the premises, police yelled "Fire in the hole," and detonated something.

Swarms of police surrounded various buildings as they searched for the suspect as helicopters buzzed overhead. SWAT teams, FBI agents and armored vehicles assembled at the scene as law enforcement began a sweep of the neighborhood.

At a press briefing early Friday afternoon Col. Timothy Albenof the Massachusetts State Police said investigators are progressing in their search, having completed 60 to 70 percent of the Watertown area they wanted to cover. "There has been no apprehension at this point," he said.

Alben also announced there would be a controlled explosion later today in Watertown, at a house that was secured by police but deemed unsafe for investigators to search.

The Middlesex district attorney said the two men are suspected of killing a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer on campus late Thursday, then stealing a car at gunpoint and later releasing its driver unharmed. Hours earlier, police had released photos of the marathon bombing suspects and asked for the public's help finding them.

Authorities say the suspects threw explosives from the car as police followed it into Watertown. The suspects and police exchanged gunfire, and one of the suspects was critically injured and later died while the other escaped.

Boston in lockdown

Residents throughout the Boston area -- including Watertown, Cambridge, Waltham, Newton and Belmont -- have been advised to keep their doors locked and not let anyone in. The Boston Police Department warned residents to "stay home." Vehicles were barred from entering or leaving Watertown.

Public and private schools and universities throughout Boston are closed.

Public transit service in Boston has been suspended. Taxis were suspended in the morning, but were resumed in the afternoon. Amtrak service was also suspended indefinitely between Boston and New York. Peter Pan Bus Lines has suspended service to Boston, and Megabus has canceled buses between Boston and other cities.

The FAA has also imposed temporary flight restrictions in the Boston area. Logan International Airport is open but is operating under heightened security. JetBlue is allowing anybody scheduled to fly to or from Boston to change their ticket for free.

The Boston Red Sox announced that their game against the Kansas City Royals at Fenway Park tonight has been postponed, WBZ reported. The Boston Bruins (who were to play the Pittsburgh Penguins this evening) likewise have postponed tonight's game.

Connecticut State Police issued an alert saying they were investigating information that the suspect may be in a 1995 gray Honda Odyssey with Massachusetts plates 93NN73. The State Police had earlier issued advisors for two other cars, including one registered to the dead suspect; those cars were later located.

Suspects of Chechnyan origin

The suspects were identified by law enforcement officials and family members as ethnic Chechen brothers from Dagestan, which neighbors Chechnya in southern Russia. They lived near Boston, and had been in the U.S. for about a decade after receiving asylum, an uncle said.

The two have been identified as Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 19, of Cambridge, Mass., and his brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26. They are legal permanent residents of the U.S.

CBS News confirmed that Dzhokhar is an American citizen, having been naturalized on September 11, 2012.

He is reportedly a student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and lived in a dorm there. Correspondent Anthony Mason reports that Tsarnaev was seen on campus yesterday afternoon where he spoke with a friend, who said there was nothing out of the ordinary in their conversation.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev had studied accounting as a part-time student at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston for three semesters from 2006 to 2008, the school said. U.S. government officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not allowed to talk about an investigation in progress, said that he traveled to Russia last year and returned to the U.S. six months later.

Bob Orr reports that, according to federal sources, the family has had "brief contacts" with law enforcement over the years -- though not big enough for the family to be on the radar screens of law enforcement officials.

A law enforcement source told CBS News that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was arrested on a domestic violence charge in Boston in 2009. The source also said that Tamerlan had three Jihadi videos on his Internet accounts.

Tamerlan -- the suspect seen in FBI photos released Thursday as wearing the black hat -- was wounded in an exchange of gunfire with police during last night's pursuit. He was captured and rushed to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, where he died at 1:35 a.m. Doctors said he had gunshot wounds and a blast injury. The wounds were throughout the trunk of the man's body, CBS Station WBZ reported.

Ruslan Tsarni, an uncle of the suspects, told CBS Station WBZ "it absolutely devastated me," upon learning that his nephews had been named a suspect in the Marathon bombing. "It's not comprehendable, in our family."

Tsarni told WBZ that his nephews had immigrated to the United States around 2000 or 2001, and have lived in Cambridge since that time.

According to Tsarni, Dzhokhar completed high school in Cambridge. Tsarni, who says he hasn't been in touch with the brothers since around 2009, told the station he believes that the brothers' parents may have moved back to Russia.

Informed of the unfolding situation that left Tamerlan Tsarnaev dead in a shootout, Tsarni said, "He deserved his. He absolutely deserved his. . . . They do not deserve to live on this earth."

Alvi Tsarni, another uncle of the suspects, told CBS News said he was shocked about learning news of his nephews. "It's not possible. My nephews can't do this stuff, there's no way," he said.

Tsarni said that after not having heard from his nephews for the past two or three years owing to "family problems," he received a call out of the blue from Tamerlan Tsarnaev last night at 7 p.m. "Yesterday he called me, said, 'Forgive me,' just like this," Tsarni said.

He said they spoke for about 10 minutes and prayed together, but that there was no talk of the bombing.

He also said that Tamerlan's wife is an American, a Christian who had recently converted to Islam, and that she and Tamerlan had a child.

In Toronto, the suspects' aunt, Maret Tsarnev, told the CBC she was in disbelief after seeing the FBI's wanted photos this morning. "This cannot be true," she said. "If somebody wants to convince me, show me evidence. . . . I am suspicious this was staged -- this picture was staged," she said.

The FBI removed a computer from the West New York, N.J., home of a sister of Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

The woman, speaking earlier through a crack in the door, told News12 New Jersey and The Star-Ledger she is sorry for the families that lost loved ones. She said she doesn't know what got into her brothers. At the same time, she says she doesn't know if it's true that her brothers were responsible.

Meanwhile, the father of the suspects claims that his son who is still on the loose is a smart and accomplished young man, describing him as a "true angel."

Anzor Tsarnaev spoke with The Associated Press by telephone from the Russian city of Makhachkala on Friday after police said his sons Tamerlan had been killed in a shootout with the police and the other, Dzhokhar, was being pursued.

"My son is a true angel," the elder Tsarnaev said, claiming his son was a medical student in the U.S. "He is such an intelligent boy. We expected him to come on holidays here."

President Obama was briefed on the situation overnight, according to a White House official.

The MIT shooting on the Cambridge campus Thursday night was followed by gunfire and explosions in Watertown, about 10 miles west of Boston.

CBS News senior correspondent John Miller reports that the evening's events began with the robbery of a 7-Eleven convenience store in Cambridge. It was originally reported that the two suspects were involved in the robbery; however, a spokeswoman for the Cambridge 7-Eleven on Massachusetts Avenue told CBS News that the robbery was unrelated.

Nonetheless, when an MIT police cruiser responding to a disturbance call entered the area, the suspects apparently feared they were being targeted.

"They encounter an MIT Police Officer, and rather than see, 'Is he going to follow us? Is he going to chase us?' it appears that they came up and engaged him, killed him in his police vehicle, took off," said John Miller.

The MIT officer who had been responding to report of a disturbance Thursday night was ambushed and shot multiple times, according to a statement from the Middlesex district attorney's office and Cambridge police.

The officer, who was later pronounced dead at Massachusetts General Hospital, was identified as 26-year-old Sean Collier.

The Middlesex district attorney's office said Collier was a Somerville resident who had worked at MIT since January 2012. Before that, he was a civilian employee of the Somerville Police Department.

Authorities said after the shooting, the two men rode off in a stolen police vehicle, then carjacked a man in a Mercedes-Benz, keeping him with them in the car for half an hour before releasing him at a gas station in Cambridge. The man, who was not injured, informed police of the carjackers.

The search for the vehicle led to a chase that ended in Watertown, where authorities said the suspects threw explosive devices from the car and exchanged gunfire with police at about 1 a.m. Friday. Dozens of police officers and FBI agents were in the neighborhood and a helicopter circled overhead.

A transit police officer was seriously injured during the chase, authorities said.

State police spokesman David Procopio said, "The incident in Watertown did involve what we believe to be explosive devices possibly, potentially, being used against the police officers."

During the gunfight, according to sources, Tamerlan Tsarnaev threw a bomb toward police who advanced on him. Tsarnaev was shot down.

His brother, Dzhokhar, then got back into the car to escape, backing over his brother's body in the process.

Five blocks away, Dzhokhar hopped out of the car and fled on foot.

Officer Richard Donohue, Jr., 33, was rushed to Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, where he is in critical condition, reports WBZ.

Boston cab driver Imran Saif said he was standing on a street corner at a police barricade across from a diner when he heard an explosion.

"I heard a loud boom and then a rapid succession of pop, pop, pop," he said. "It sounded like automatic weapons. And then I heard the second explosion."

He said he could smell something burning and advanced to check it out but area residents at their windows yelled at him, "Hey, it's gunfire! Don't go that way!"

MIT said right after the 10:30 p.m. shooting that police were sweeping the campus in Cambridge and urged people to remain indoors. They urged people urged to stay away from the Stata Building, a mixed-use building with faculty offices, classrooms and a common area.

Hours later, MIT, which has about 11,000 students, said the campus was clear but the shooter was still on the loose.

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