Marathon manhunt: Two chaotic nights, a daylong search, a hidden target
WATERTOWN, Mass. -- An intense manhunt for a Boston Marathon bombing suspect ended Friday evening just blocks from where his brother died in a firefight with police early that morning.
Just minutes after Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick lifted the lockdown on residents in Watertown, local, state and federal law enforcement officers responded to the neighborhood where a resident reported that bombing suspect Dzhokar Tsarnaev, 19, was hiding.
About an hour after the Franklin Street standoff began, officers positioned near the crowd of onlookers began clapping, smiling and shaking hands. Their police radios had announced that the suspect who was hiding on a boat was alive and in custody.
Residents cheered loudly as officers exited the scene on foot and in cars, creating an impromptu parade.
"The encouraging part for us residents is that we knew we had all the assets we needed out on the street," said Watertown resident Bob Erickson, who was among the cheering crowd. "We all just hung together and this came to a successful conclusion."
Resident Marc Meyer said he couldn't wait to go home and get a scotch after the long, stressful day.
"There was a lot of action here, we came out early and heard the first volley of [shots]," he said after the arrest was announced.
"Usually they say the state, feds and locals are not coordinated, but they were clearly coordinated here."
Boston Mayor John Menino took to the police radio to personally congratulate officers shortly after the 19-year-old was taken into custody.
"I'm proud of you," the mayor said.
The terror suspect was transported to Beth Israel Hospital for serious injuries. As the media gathered near the entrance to Beth Israel, Lucas D'urso stood wearing his yellow marathon volunteer jacket. It was the first time he felt safe to go outside all day.
He said he was there to witness history. D'urso was not there the day of the marathon, as he instead had volunteered to set up on Saturday. "He did horrible things, and anyone who did that needs to be brought to justice," D'urso said. "Thank god he's alive so we can question him."
22 hours earlier
The excitement Friday evening was an about-face for the community that spent the day gripped by the threat of a terror suspect who escaped a deadly shootout with police and was now on the run.
Boston and surrounding communities ground to a halt.
Heavily armed officers scoured the neighborhood, where the first suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, was killed during a firefight with police around 1 a.m. Friday.
The suspects tossed homemade explosives at officers, including a pressure cooker bomb similar to the ones used in Monday's attack. Dzhokar Tsarnaev, the second suspect, managed to escape on foot during the deadly confrontation and hide from officers, who spent Friday searching for him.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev suffered multiple gunshot wounds and trauma to his body that suggested to doctors he'd been injured in an explosion. A city behind doors
Deserted city streets, shuttered businesses and a Blackhawk helicopters patrolled the skies above Watertown Friday. It looked more like a scene from a Hollywood action movie than reality in Boston Friday.
Both Boston Marathon bombing suspects were identified in surveillance video by the FBI Thursday evening as the two men behind Monday's deadly attack.
Four days after the double bombing killed three and injured more than 170 people, deadly violence erupted once again in Boston late on Thursday.
A violent crime spree that spanned the nortnern Boston area began around 10:20 p.m. Thursday when the terror suspects allegedly killed Massachusetts Institute of Technology campus police officer Sean Collier, 26,. The officer was found shot to death inside his car on campus.
The suspects then reportedly carjacked a vehicle in Cambridge, Mass., the Associated Press reported.
Police followed the carjacked vehicle in the quiet suburb of Watertown, about 20 minutes from the site of Monday's bombing. Gunshots and a possible explosion shattered the silence in the sleeping neighborhood as the two suspects engaged in a gun battle with police.
When it was over, 15 police officers had been injured, and Tamerlan Tsarnaev was mortally wounded. Doctors attended to him at Beth Israel Medical Center.
At a predawn press conference, a doctor who treated Tamerlan Tsarnaev said the medical staff gives "the best care to every patient you don't know if it's the suspect or an injured officer."
Doctors worked to revive him for 15 minutes, but he died at the hospital.
During the firefight, Tsarnaev's younger brother, Dzhokar, disappeared initially.
A manhunt Friday morning ensued that included hundreds of law enforcement officers including members of the ATF, FBI and National Guard.
The overnight developments occurred rapidly and new information was released to the public almost every hour. At 4 a.m. police confirmed the men involved in Watertown shootout were the terror suspects. Most of Boston was still asleep at 4:30 a.m. when police ordered Watertown residents to stay inside and be on the lookout for the terror suspect.
Heavily armed police and military descended on parking lots near Watertown and Arsenal malls, launching searches into the surrounding area for the 19-year-old.
A 5:30 a.m. Gov. Deval Patrick halted all mass transportation to and from Boston, as well public transit and taxi fleets. Officials ordered Watertown on lockdown, not allowing any traffic in or out of the community.
During subsequent media briefings, Patrick cautioned Watertown residents that the suspect was on the loose and was a deadly threat to the community. Heavily armed police walked door-to-door, searching. Residents were urged not to open their doors for anyone except for an appropriately uniformed identifiable police officer.
As residents stayed inside, normally bustling areas of the city were deserted. Boston Commons, a park and green space popular to Bostonians and tourists, was empty Friday morning.
Some businesses persevered through the slow day. Mimi's Roast Beef, Seafood and Subs on Main Street was open. Owner Costas Pahigiannis said he didn't see any reason to close, as he was about two miles from the manhunt.
"He'd have to do some running to get to here, so I think we're okay," said Dian Khantar, who works for Pahigiannis.
"That's what he's been saying all day, ‘There's no safer place than right here,'" Khantar said of her boss Pahigiannis.
Jim Fitzgerald was leaving with a bag full of dinner to bring back to his family.
"It's scary, I've never seen anything like this," he said.
The street, which he said was normally crowded and packed with cars and pedestrian traffic, was desolate. All other businesses in the area were shut down, and no traffic except for law enforcement vehicles used the road.
"I think it's safe. He's on the other side of town, if he's still in the area. I don't even know if he's still in Watertown," Fitzgerald said.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev lived in Cambridge on Norfolk Street, and police surrounded his neighborhood Friday morning. Residents living in nearby apartments were evacuated.
In an afternoon press conference, police said a large number of explosives were found in the suspect's house, and a planned controlled demolition was called off as the devices were disabled and removed.
The long day came to a successful close for officers and residents of Watertown who celebrated in the streets late Friday. Church bells rang, horns honked and people cheered.
"I wanted to see him taken alive, because I wanted to get some answers some justice and a little closure" Watertown resident Mark Tardiff said. "Now we get to watch him brought to justice and that's a good feeling."
The Associated Press, Jennifer Swift of the New Haven Register and Sarah Favot and of the Lowell Sun contributed to this story.
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