WATERTOWN, Mass. — With Boston virtually paralyzed, thousands of officers with rifles and armored vehicles swarmed the streets in and around the city on Friday, hunting for a 19-year-old college student wanted in the Boston Marathon bombing after his older brother and alleged accomplice was killed in a furious getaway attempt overnight.
During the long night of violence, the brothers killed an MIT police officer, severely wounded another lawman and hurled explosives at police in a car chase and gun battle, authorities said.
The suspects were identified by law enforcement officials and family members as Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, ethnic Chechen brothers who had lived in Dagestan, which neighbors Chechnya in southern Russia. . They had been in the U.S. for about a decade, an uncle said, and were believed to be living in Cambridge, Mass.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, a 26-year-old who had been known to the FBI as Suspect No. 1 and was seen in surveillance footage of the marathon in a black baseball cap, was killed overnight, officials said. His younger brother, who had been dubbed Suspect No. 2 and was seen wearing a white, backward baseball cap in the images from Monday's deadly bombing — escaped and was on the run.
Their uncle in Maryland, Ruslan Tsarni, pleaded on live television: "Dzhokhar, if you are alive, turn yourself in and ask for forgiveness."
Authorities in Boston suspended all mass transit and warned close to 1 million people in the entire city and some of its suburbs to stay indoors as the hunt for Suspect No. 2 went on. Businesses were asked not to open. People waiting at bus and subway stops were told to go home. The Red Sox and Bruins postponed their games.
From Watertown to Cambridge, police SWAT teams, sharpshooters and FBI agents surrounded various buildings as police helicopters buzzed overhead and armored vehicles rumbled through the streets. Authorities also searched trains.
"We believe this man to be a terrorist," said Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis. "We believe this to be a man who's come here to kill people."
The bombings on Monday killed three people and wounded more than 180 others, tearing off limbs in a spray of shrapnel and instantly raising the specter of another terrorist attack on U.S. soil.
Chechnya was the scene of two wars between Russian forces and separatists since 1994, in which tens of thousands were killed in heavy Russian bombing. That spawned an Islamic insurgency that has carried out deadly bombings in Russia and the region, although not in the West.
Investigators in the Boston case have shed no light on the motive for the bombing and have said it is unclear whether it was the work of domestic or international terrorists or someone else entirely with an unknown agenda.
The endgame — at least for Suspect No. 1 — came just hours after the FBI released photos and video of the two young men at the marathon's finish line and appealed to the public for help in identifying and capturing them.
State Police spokesman Dave Procopio said police realized they were dealing with the bombing suspects based on what the two men told a carjacking victim during their getaway attempt overnight.
Tsarni, the men's uncle, said that the brothers traveled here together from Russia. He angrily called his nephews "losers" and said they had struggled to settle themselves in the U.S. and ended up "thereby just hating everyone."
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 Tsarnaev traveled to Russia last year and returned to the U.S. six months later.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was registered as a student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and lived in a dormitory there, according to other students. Students there said he was on campus this week after the bombings. The university closed down along with colleges around the Boston area as the search unfolded.
Their father, Anzor Tsarnaev, said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press from the Russian city of Makhachkala that his younger son, Dzhokhar, is "a true angel." He said his son was studying medicine.
Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.
- http://www.arkansas…">Russia's Caucasus: breeding ground for terror
Key moments in the search for the suspects
• At 4:10 p.m. Thursday, investigators of the bombings release photographs and video of two suspects. They ask for the public's help in identifying the men.
• About 9:20 p.m., shots are fired on the campus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, just outside Boston.
• At 9:30 p.m., an MIT campus police officer who was responding to a disturbance is found shot multiple times in his vehicle, apparently in a confrontation with the Boston Marathon bombing suspects. He is later pronounced dead.
• Shortly afterward, two armed men reportedly carjack a Mercedes SUV in Cambridge. A man who was in the vehicle is held for about a half hour and then released unharmed at a gas station on Memorial Drive in Cambridge.
• Police soon pursue the carjacked vehicle in Watertown, just west of Cambridge.
• Some kind of explosive devices are thrown from the vehicle in an apparent attempt to stop police. The carjackers and police exchange gunfire. A transit police officer is seriously injured. One suspect, later identified as Suspect No. 1 in the marathon bombings, is critically injured and later pronounced dead.
• Authorities launch a manhunt for the other suspect.
• About midnight Friday, gunshots and explosions are heard in Watertown, just outside Boston. Dozens of police officers and FBI agents converge on a Watertown neighborhood. A helicopter circles overhead.
• About 3:30 a.m., Massachusetts state and Boston police hold a short outdoor news briefing. They tell people living in that section of eastern Watertown to stay in their homes. They identify the carjackers as the same men suspected in the marathon bombings. Overnight, police also release a photograph of a man believed to be Suspect No. 2, apparently taken from store video earlier in the evening at a 7-Eleven convenience store in Cambridge. He is wearing a grey hoodie-style sweatshirt.
• About 5:35 a.m., The Associated Press reports that the bomb suspects are from a Russian region near Chechnya and lived in the United States for at least one year.
• About 5:45 a.m., The Associated Press identifies the surviving Boston bomb suspect as Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 19, who has been living in Cambridge, Mass.
• About 7:40 a.m., a U.S. law enforcement official and the uncle of the suspects confirm that the name of the slain suspect is Tamerlan Tsarnaev, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's older brother.
• About 9:20 a.m., Connecticut State Police say a gray Honda CRV believed to be linked to Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has been recovered in Boston.
• About 9:35 a.m., the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth says it closed its campus and ordered an evacuation after confirming that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is registered there. The school says it closed the campus "out of an abundance of caution" as the search continued.
• About 10:30 a.m., Massachusetts State Police explain that the brothers suspected in the bombings were in the Honda CRV when they carjacked the Mercedes SUV. For a while, each drove one of the two vehicles, but then ditched the Honda and reunited in the Mercedes.
• About 11:35 a.m., state police in Watertown say officers are searching door-to-door but still have not found the bombing suspect.