"We got him," a local newscaster said on air, and with those words Clerys pub in Boston burst into applause.

The bar — just a few blocks from the site of the Boston Marathon bombing — opened as soon as staff heard the city had removed its stay in place order. As police honed in on suspect 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, locals flocked to the pub with hopes of seeing an arrest.

"I think everyone around the world wanted to see these people brought to justice," Trevor Matticep told CBC News.

Beside him, a smile washed over Heather Palmucci’s face as she clapped. Palmucci has followed every aspect of the investigation, and said she was surprised how long it took authorities to catch Tsarnaev.

"This is like a movie," she said. "They will make this into a movie."

Bargoer Timothy James Spiegel agreed. He said the massive amounts of misinformation about the bombing made Boston a scary place this week.

"The technology, the media … everything about this was confusing," Spiegel said.

A contact at Spiegel’s alma mater, Boston College, sent him a note to say the campus was already partying. Celebrations are also underway at Northeastern University in downtown Boston.

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Zack Bryden, left, and Morgan Eline were on their way to dinner when they heard news was developing about the manhunt. They ducked into the Hilton hotel to watch the news. (John Rieti/CBC)

Throughout the downtown core, people screamed joyously out car windows as they drove through streets that are still mostly empty. On the sidewalks, many people carried groceries they had gone without while the city was locked down.

A group of about 30 watched as several media outlets went live near the bombing site. Oklahoma residents Bo and Donna Smith enjoyed the spectacle.

Bo said he was "just happy to be outside," on Friday night. He said he felt secure, but he didn’t want to interfere with the investigation.

Also watching was San Diego runner Scott Thompson, who was with a friend getting treatment in the marathon’s medical tent when the bombs went off on Monday.

"I’m happy that they got him," said Thompson, dressed in his blue and yellow race jacket.

"Hopefully they can figure out why they did what they did."

Thompson said he’ll be back to run the Boston Marathon again, but his girlfriend, who at one point stood near the spot the bombs went off, probably won’t.