Three people are dead, one of which an 8-year-old boy, and dozens wounded after an explosion near the finish line at the Boston Marathon today, reports say.
According to the Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis, who appeared at a press conference around 5 p.m eastern, there were a total of three bombs. Two bombs located by the finish line on Boylston Street detonated at 2:50 p.m.
UPDATE 6:27 p.m. eastern: The first bomb detonated right beside the finish line and the second went off about 10 seconds later about 550 feet south, but still along the running path, according to the New York Times.
A third went off later at the JFK Library, which is located about 4 miles away from the finish line, but no one was injured in that explosion.
As of right now the Boston police are scrambling to piece together what happened. Davis said they aren’t sure if the third explosion is a related incident, but they’re treating it as if it is.
Unconfirmed reports say the bombs were detonated remotely via mobile phone or some kind of electronic device, similar to what insurgents use to detonate IEDs in Iraq.
Davis said Boston police are working with the ATF, the National Guard, FBI and other agencies to investigate the incident.
Right now the area surrounding the finish line and library are considered crime scenes, Davis said. Bomb units are combing through all the bags and parcels on the ground and treating each one as a suspicious device.
Davis also said that there was no “warning” or any head’s up that this attack was going to take place.
The Boston Marathon brings in about 27,000 runners who come from all over the U.S. and the world, and more than 500,000 spectators stand on the sidelines to watch the race.
Boston police are asking people not to congregate in big crowds in the city, and they also asked that if you’re visiting the city that you either stay in your hotel or go home.
The next update by the Boston police will be at 7 p.m. central, and authorities should have more information by then.
UPDATE 6:18 p.m. eastern: President Barack Obama will issue a statement on the explosion at the Boston Marathon at 6:10 eastern tonight from the White House, the Associated Press reports. The President has been monitoring the incident since he was first notified about it around 3 p.m.
A White House spokesman said Obama has pledged to the Massachusetts governor and Boston mayor to provide whatever federal support is needed in responding to the incident.
We still do not know who did this or why. And people shouldn’t jump to conclusions before we have all the facts. But make no mistake — we will get to the bottom of this. And we will find out who did this; we’ll find out why they did this. Any responsible individuals, any responsible groups will feel the full weight of justice.
Today is a holiday in Massachusetts — Patriots’ Day. It’s a day that celebrates the free and fiercely independent spirit that this great American city of Boston has reflected from the earliest days of our nation. And it’s a day that draws the world to Boston’s streets in a spirit of friendly competition. Boston is a tough and resilient town. So are its people. I’m supremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other, and move forward as one proud city. And as they do, the American people will be with them every single step of the way.
You should anticipate that as we get more information, our teams will provide you briefings. We’re still in the investigation stage at this point. But I just want to reiterate we will find out who did this and we will hold them accountable.
UPDATE 8:34 p.m. eastern: Boston police have asked those who have any information or tips related to this incident to call the Boston PD’s Crime Stoppers Tip line at 1-800-494-TIPS.
Also, if you’re looking for a family member who may have been injured in this incident to call 617-635-4500.