GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

April 16, 2013

Update: Child victim's dad is Salem High grad; bombs had nails, ball-bearings

By The Associated Press
Gloucester Daily Times

---- — FBI agents searched a Revere apartment overnight and appealed to the public for amateur video and photos that might yield clues to who carried out the Boston Marathon bombing, while a doctor treating the wounded said one of the victims was maimed by what looked like ball bearings or BBs.

Two bombs blew up seconds apart Monday at the finish line of one of the world’s most storied races, tearing off limbs and leaving the streets spattered with blood and strewn with broken glass. Three people were killed, including an 8-year-old boy, and more than 175 have now been confirmed as wounded.

The 8-year-old victim was confirmed today as Martin Richard of Dorchester, whose father, identified as Bill Richard, is a 1988 graduate of Salem High School, sources have confirmed. A spokesman for the family said the Richards were attempting to get over the race barriers and into the street when the second blast occurred, killing Martin.

Bill Richard and Henry Richard were not seriously injured, but doctors did remove ball bearings from Bill Richard’s leg, the spokesman said.

As the investigation goes forward, officials have essentially confirmed the incident as a terrorist action. Doctors who have carried out surgeries on several of those who were wounded aid they have removed nails, nall bearings and other types of debris that were packed with the explosive devices — consistent with improvised explosive devices military personnel have come upon in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Federal investigators said no one had claimed responsibility for the bombings on one of the city’s biggest civic holidays, Patriots Day. But the blasts raised the specter of another terrorist attack on U.S. soil.

President Barack Obama was careful not to use the words “terror” or “terrorism” as he spoke at the White House on Monday, but an administration official said the bombings were being treated as an act of terrorism.

“We will find out who did this. We’ll find out why they did this,” the president said. “Any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice.”

Across the U.S., from Washington to Los Angeles, police tightened security, monitoring landmarks, government buildings, transit hubs and sporting events.

At a press conference this morning, Gov. Deval Patrick said that there were, in fact, no unexploded bombs or other devised found. He said that crews had destroyed other packages or items that had been considered suspicious, but they did not prove to be explosive devices.

The FBI, meanwhile, took charge of the investigation lats Monday night, converging on a home in the Ocean Tower apartment complex on Ocean Drive in Revere. Agents too three large bags of potential evidence from the apartment, but officials — while comfirming that the raid was in conjunction with the bombing investigation — did not elaborate on any items that had been seized.

Autorities also appealed to the public for any video, audio and photos taken by marathon spectators.

The fiery explosions took place about 10 seconds and about 100 yards apart, knocking spectators and at least one runner off their feet, shattering windows and sending columns of smoke rising over the street. Victims lost limbs and suffered broken bones, shrapnel wounds and ruptured eardrums.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, Alasdair Conn, chief of emergency services, said: “This is something I’ve never seen in my 25 years here ... this amount of carnage in the civilian population. This is what we expect from war.”

At the Richards’ home in Dorchester, a candle burned on the stoop of the ingle-family dwelling, and the word “Peace” was written in chalk on the front walkway.

Neighbor Betty Delorey said Martin loved to climb the neighborhood trees, and hop the fence outside his home.

The Boston Marathon is one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious races and about 23,000 runners participated. Most of them had crossed the finish line by the time the bombs exploded, but thousands more were still completing the course.

The attack may have been timed for maximum bloodshed: The four-hour mark is typically a crowded time near the finish line because of the slow-but-steady recreational runners completing the race and because of all the friends and relatives clustered around to cheer them on.

Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis said authorities had received “no specific intelligence that anything was going to happen” at the race.

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