Skip to comments.Boston Marathon Bombings: What Happened And What Didn't (Nice summation of current info)
Posted on 04/16/2013 12:47:09 PM PDT by Straight Vermonter
As with any crisis, early information is incomplete and sometimes outright wrong. The day after the Boston Marathon bombings, a clearer picture has emerged. Let's get up to speed with where things stand right now.
What do we know about the bombs?
The first bomb went off at 2:50 p.m., a few feet short of the finish line, in front of a sporting goods store and a LensCrafters. The second went off 12 seconds later, about a block further up Boylston Street, which serves as the home stretch of the marathon. You can see the blast locations on the map above, annotated with eyewitness video of each explosion.
The bombs themselves were "small portable explosive devices." A surgeon at one Boston hospital likened the injuries treated to those caused by "improvised explosive devices." Initial reports claimed the bombs were set off inside trash cans, but authorities seem to have backed off those claims. At the very least, the inward-shattering storefront windows indicate the explosives went off on the sidewalk, as opposed to inside the stores.
An Associated Press report now says the bombs were were "fashioned out of pressure cookers and packed with shards of metal, nails and ball bearings," placed in duffel bags, and left on the ground.
What about unexploded bombs?
Contrary to early reports, there were no other explosive devices found in Boston, Gov. Deval Patrick confirmed at his press conference this morning. There were hundreds of packages left behind by fleeing spectators, and all had to be inspected, which was the source of a lot of confusion yesterdayparticularly for those people following along on a police scanner. But now officials are adamant: The only explosive devices along the marathon route were the two that detonated.
And the JFK Library?
The library, several miles away from the marathon route, was the scene of an intense-looking fire soon after the bombs went off, and people naturally jumped to conclusions. But it was soon determined that it was accidental and unrelated and had started in the building's HVAC system.
How many people were hurt?
After spending most of the afternoon at two, the death toll rose to three last night. One of the dead has been identified as 8-year-old Martin Richard from Dorchester, Mass., who was near the finish line with his family. They were moving away from the first blast when the second one hit. Richard's mother (head) and sister (leg) reportedly suffered "grievous" injuries in the blast, while his brother was unhurt.
A second victim has been identified, 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Arlington, Mass. Campbell was at the finish line to cheer on her boyfriend, who was running the race.
At last count, Boston area hospitals reported 176 people injured in the blasts, at least 17 of them critically. Many have been released, but there are likely dozens maimed, wounded by shrapnel, or missing limbs. One man who had just finished the race when the blasts went off describes what he saw:
"These runners just finished and they don't have legs now," said Roupen Bastajian, 35, a Rhode Island state trooper and former Marine. "So many of them. There are so many people without legs. It's all blood."
Is there a suspect?
No. There is, however, a "person of interest," to use the authorities' term. For most of yesterday, the New York Post had claimed a Saudi national injured in the blast was under guard at a hospital and being questioned. The report was largely ignored, along with the Post's death toll of 12 (which the newspaper has quietly stopped citing today), but there's more confirmation now.
Despite conflicting reports, a 20-something student from Saudi Arabia, in Boston studying English, has been questioned at Brigham and Women's Hospital, where he's being treated for shrapnel injuries. Last night federal and local authorities searched his apartment in Revere.
Can I help?
The FBI has taken the lead in the investigation, and the bureau is seeking information and especially video from anyone near the finish line. You can contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324).
The Red Cross received more than enough blood donations to cover present needs, as always seems to be the case after a tragedy. But blood doesn't keep, and there are plenty of people around the country who will need blood in the coming weeks and months. The Red Cross encourages you to make an appointment by calling 1-800-RED CROSS or visiting redcrossblood.org.
How hard is it to get around/out of Boston today?
Things are moving relatively smoothly. Logan has no major delays, though you should expect extra security at airports and train stations. The MBTA is running close to normal, with the Green Line stop at Copley closed until further notice.
What about sports?
Last night's Senators-Bruins game was postponed, with the new date yet to be announced. Tonight's Pacers-Celtics game has been canceled, and will not be made up. The first Boston-area sporting event will be the Sabres-Bruins game on Wednesday night. It'll be emotional.
I ran the marathon. Now where's my stuff?
The Boston Athletic Association has changed the location where runners can pick up their bags. They're now at Berkeley Street, between St. James and Boylston.
Did you see that guy on the roof?
Yeah, we saw Roof Guy. The presence of Roof Guy would only be suspicious if watching marathons from rooftops wasn't an ultra-common thing to do, or if police surveillance didn't regularly keep watch from rooftop posts. But no, you're probably right. That guy's up to no good. Way to crack this case wide open.
Maybe it's Bigfoot? Maybe it's Obama?
Conspiracies theories of all kinds bloomed in the immediate aftermath of the bombings. Like the one from the University of Mobile's cross country coach, who thought it was really weird that there were bomb-sniffing dogs at the start and finish lines. Again, these are common at major events since 9/11, and they don't indicate there were any specific threats. (Authorities said there were none.)
You bet. Within a half-hour of the blasts, conspiracy-monger Alex Jones declared that the government had staged the attack. Last night, someone from Infowars asked the governor if this was "another false flag attack staged to take our civil liberties?" This morning he was asked about Roof Guy.
Any other conspiracy theories?
The timing gave rise to other kinds of speculation: Monday was Patriots' Day, after all. It's a Massachusetts holiday commemorating the opening battles of the American Revolution, one that's been co-opted by fringe groups. The Waco assault occurred on Patriots' Day, though a different date (April 19). The Oklahoma City bombing occurred on the anniversary of Waco, though not on Patriots' Day. Other anniversaries this week: the Columbine shooting, the Virginia Tech massacre, and Hitler's birthday.
Gawker has a full rundown of conspiracy theories.
Aerial photo via Bing Maps. Graphic by Jim Cooke.
More pics, video and links at the original source.
Are we to infer from this article that the US Government, which conducted the Waco Assault, is a fringe group?
about the Saudi student..he may not be a suspect but at the presser this morning one of the big shot cops said ICE was involved....I'll bet they're checking out a lot of "students"...
Thanks for this post. It thought the explosions were across the street from each other. That’s what I get for listening to the news yesterday. DOH!
I want to know why Patriot’s day is the 15th and not the 19th.
Oh let me guess - they wanted long weekends even at tat level. Who cares when it actually is.
I would look closely at the location of the second bomb and why that spot was chosen. Could be more significant than the first bomb.
Hitler’s birthday is April 20th. That would seem to rule him out. Besides, I’ve heard he’s dead.
The building he was on was near the second bomb but he was well back from the front of the building and high enough that he would not have a view of the site.
Just a coincidence.
They’ve been doing it that way since 1969. The holiday is a really big deal in Boston, I don’t see how it could be that way mid-week.
Look at it this way, 47 state don’t celebrate the day at all.
“The JFK library, several miles away from the marathon route”
This is slightly misleading. It gives the impression that’s it’s a couple of miles down the road. Boston is a very small city. The JFK Library is not in downtown Boston at all. It is in Dorchester, part of Greater Boston, several miles to the south, by the water of Dorchester Bay, in a totally different area.
If the two bombs went off twelve seconds apart, that might indicate that the timers were meant to set them off at the same time.
The finish line and just before the finish line would likely be the most crowded spots.
“Theyve been doing it that way since 1969. The holiday is a really big deal in Boston, I dont see how it could be that way mid-week.”
By contrast, Bunker Hill day, June 17, is always celebrated on the date, no matter what day of the week it is. We Bostonians are a strange lot.
Point is, if the subject of the holiday is actually important, the ACTUAL DATE stays unchanged.
Thank God July 4 is still July 4, not the most convenient day for travelers and revelers. It must still be somewhat important to the Feds to not downgrade it to the closest Monday.
I would hazard a guess that the second explosion, being about 1 to 2 blocks down the street, was set there to catch anyone running away from the first explosion near the finish line.
There would be many more people on that side of the finish line than on the other side of the finish line.
12 seconds is enough, especially in this day and age, for most people not in the radius of the first blast to be moving away from the first and be caught in the second.
My wife’s cousin is a Boston paramedic and was a first responder. His sister told us the injuries he responded to were “horrific”. Last night he was in the hospital helping the doctors and nurses.
I’m sure there is software available to stitch together all the disparate videos taken at the scene. This is the kind of stuff that game designers do all day long.
That is strange.
But then, is it actually “celebrated”? Or is it like our MD Day March 25, or Defender’s Day Sept 12 - noted in local calendars but no-one actually knows it unless you’re a geek like me?
Accountability should be against Congress for leaving
the borders open, and against the DO”J” and
Obama for arming and defending al Qaeda.
It’s celebrated at Bunker Hill, and remembered by those of us that remember. Otherwise, it’s just a day the the city and county employees get off.
Yeah, like Ft. McHenry and its events, often not even on the actual day but the whole weekend. If you’re not aware of their events, you’re not aware of Defender’s Day.
I should say I’m surprised you get a day off.
flight at Boston’s Logan Airport reportedly detained... http://www.debka.com/article/22901/Saudi-terror-cell-possibly-al-Qaeda-behind-Boston-Marathon-bombings-Manhunt-for-escaped-suspect
I certainly think this SOB should be hung from the highest telephone pole in the center of Boston but I am sure glad the SOB didn’t use a Modern Sporting Rifle with several 30 magazines.
They’re called hack holidays here because only the city, county, state and other municipal employees get the day off. Everybody else is at work.
That would make for a powerful investigative tool... software that could take from dozens or hundreds of images and videos from different perspectives and build a 3-dimensional virtual reality presentation.
IIRC they were called the Branch Clintonians....
Title should be: What Happened, and What They’re going to tell us That Happened.
It would be interesting to know what kind of imaging capabilities the intel agencies actually have. Of course, then I’d have to be killed :)
It was the 19th the year I ran Boston; I think they've made it the middle Monday of April now for the long weekends instead of an interrupted work week.
But I could be wrong, it wouldn't be the first time!
So you know who’s responsible? You should notify the authorities if you do.
Alex Jones is his own worst enemy. A lot of his information is spot on and then he wanders into the govt is responsible for everything that happens territory and loses people. Not saying there’s never been false flags before, but sometimes plain ol shit just happens.
They are really stretching here. I dont care that Baaahstun and Massholechussets selects a date each year to make it a weekend party.
To a true patriot Patriots Day is April 19th.
as usual, its like you said...another govt employee three day weekend, like they needed another one...
“That would make for a powerful investigative tool”
It’s already here:
Patriot’s day is the 3rd Monday in April. I know because I’m a fantasy baseball geek and the 11am BoSox game means an 8am strat here in Cali and I have to make sure my lineups are set.
This is turning out to be another Benghazi. First, Obama took long to do a press conference. Then he doesn’t say it was terrorism., and last he was not sure who did it. Soon he will start blaming a video. I really do think Obama is buying time and lying again to the American people.