U.S. authorities deny arrest in Boston Marathon bombings
Reports say investigators have image of potential suspect
U.S. law enforcement officials say there has been no arrest made in connection with the Boston Marathon bombings, despite media reports to the contrary.
Several major U.S. news outlets, including CNN and The Associated Press, citing unnamed officials, said earlier Wednesday that a suspect had either been arrested, or had been taken into custody. CBC News, among others, carried the AP story in Canada.
The Boston Police Department took to social media to dispute those reports, saying "there has not been an arrest in the marathon attack." The FBI and the U.S. attorney's office in Boston also said there had been no arrest.
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The Associated Press said its source, described as a law enforcement official briefed on the investigation, was standing by information that a suspect had been taken into custody.
The news agency said later that, according to an unnamed source, investigators had obtained an image of a potential suspect in the attack after sifting through photos and video.
A bomb threat forced the evacuation of the courthouse in midafternoon, the U.S. Marshals Service told AP, and security officials were sweeping the area. Workers were allowed back into the courthouse a short time later.
Law enforcement officers were initially scheduled to hold a news conference at 5 p.m. ET to update the public after an afternoon of conflicting reports, but the event was postponed. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick couldn't say when law enforcements might next speak publicly, and he urged people to be patient as the investigation unfolds.
Plea for help from public
Law enforcement agencies had asked earlier for the public to come forward with photos, videos or any information that might help with the investigation into Monday's twin bombings that killed three people and wounded more than 170.
The bombs exploded 10 or more seconds apart just next to the race course, killing eight-year-old Martin Richard, of Boston, and 29-year-old Krystle Campbell, of Medford. The Shenyang Evening News, a state-run Chinese newspaper, identified the third victim as Lu Lingzi, a graduate student at Boston University.
Injuries from the two explosions ranged from cuts and bruises to amputations. Many victims suffered lower-leg injuries, shrapnel wounds and ruptured eardrums. Dozens of patients have since been released from hospitals around the Boston area.
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The bombs are believed to have been made from ordinary kitchen pressure cookers packed with explosives, nails and ball bearings to inflict maximum carnage, investigators and others close to the case said. But the FBI said nobody had claimed responsibility.
More than 1,000 law enforcement officers from different agencies have been assigned to the investigation, which includes meticulously scouring through wreckage and debris, interviewing hundreds of witnesses and poring over thousands of videos, phone records, photographs and websites.
On Tuesday, U.S. President Barack Obama called the bombings "a heinous and cowardly act." He went on to say that "given what we now know about what took place, the FBI is investigating it as an act of terrorism."
Obama is scheduled to attend an interfaith service at the the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston tomorrow. The service will be open to members of the public on a first-come, first-served basis, officials say, but a news release cautions that people hoping to attend should "be prepared for airport-like security, and are advised to plan accordingly for lines and delays."
First sporting event since attacks
On Wednesday night, a game between the Boston Bruins and the Buffalo Sabres was the first major sporting event in the city since the attacks.
A moment of silence was held for the victims and the first responders, and a musical montage was played showing Bostonians helping each other in the aftermath of the explosions.
After singing the first lines of The Star-Spangled Banner, singer Rene Rancourt let the boisterous crowd sing the rest alone. Some carried American flags or signs that said, "Boston Strong."
Both the Bruins and Sabres players wore Boston Strong decals on their helmets.
The Sabres won in a shootout, and after the game players from both teams gathered at centre ice to salute the crowd.
- In an earlier version, this Associated Press story included examples of U.S. news media that had carried information about an arrest that later proved to be inaccurate. The story should have reported that CBC News, among others in Canada, also carried the original AP story.Sep 12, 2013 11:56 PM ET
With files from CBC News