Two explosions at Boston Marathon leave 3 dead and 80+ wounded; 2 more explosive devices found
Charles Krupa, Associated Press
Audio: Boston Dispatch responds to bombing
BOSTON — Two bombs exploded in the packed streets near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, killing three people and injuring more than 100 in a terrifying scene of shattered glass, bloodstained pavement and severed limbs, authorities said.
A senior U.S. intelligence official said two other bombs were found near the end of the 26.2-mile course.
At the White House, President Barack Obama vowed that those responsible will "feel the full weight of justice."
There was no word on the motive or who may have carried out the attack, and police said they had no suspects in custody. Authorities in Washington said there was no immediate claim of responsibility.
"They just started bringing people in with no limbs," said runner Tim Davey, of Richmond, Va. He said he and his wife, Lisa, tried to keep their children's eyes shielded from the gruesome scene inside a medical tent that had been set up to care for fatigued runners, but "they saw a lot."
"They just kept filling up with more and more casualties," Lisa Davey said. "Most everybody was conscious. They were very dazed."
The fiery twin blasts took place almost simultaneously and about 100 yards apart, knocking spectators and at least one runner off their feet, shattering windows and sending dense plumes of smoke rising over the street and through the fluttering national flags lining the course.
When the second bomb went off, the spectators' cheers turned to screams. As sirens blared, emergency workers and National Guardsmen assigned to the race for crowd control began climbing over and tearing down temporary fences to get to the blast site.
A pool of blood formed, and huge shards were missing from window panes as high as three stories.
Boston police said three people were killed. Hospitals reported at least 105 injured, at least 15 of them critically.
Some 23,000 runners took part in the race, one of the world's oldest and most prestigious marathons. One of Boston's biggest annual events, the race winds up near Copley Square, not far from the landmark Prudential Center and the Boston Public Library. It is held on Patriots Day, which commemorates the first battles of the American Revolution, at Concord and Lexington in 1775.
Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis asked people to stay indoors or go back to their hotel rooms and avoid crowds as bomb squads methodically checked parcels and bags left along the race route. He said investigators didn't know precisely where the bombs were planted or whether they were hidden in mailboxes or trash cans.
He said authorities had received "no specific intelligence that anything was going to happen" at the race.
The Federal Aviation Administration barred low-flying aircraft from within 3.5 miles of the site.
Obama was briefed on the explosions by Homeland Security adviser Lisa Monaco. Obama also told Mayor Tom Menino and Gov. Deval Patrick that his administration would provide whatever support was needed, the White House said.
"We still don't know who did this or why," Obama said, adding, "Make no mistake: We will get to the bottom of this."
A few miles away from the finish line and around the same time, a fire broke out at the John F. Kennedy Library. The police commissioner said it may have been caused by an incendiary device but didn't appear to be related to the bombings.
The first loud explosion occurred on the north side of Boylston Street, just before the photo bridge that marks the finish line. The second explosion could be heard a few seconds later.
- Photo gallery: Christmas around the world
- Heroes 2014: Ex-CIA officer uses...
- Officer kills armed 18-year-old near Ferguson
- Our six heroes of 2014
- On Christmas, Obama marks end of Afghan combat
- NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe
- Capacity crowds pack screenings of 'The...
- Ex-President George H.W. Bush to stay...
- NYPD: Cop ambush killer told passers-by... 15
- Going it alone, Obama rocked the boat... 14
- Officer kills armed 18-year-old near... 11
- Pope in blistering critique of Vatican... 9
- Key developments in the case of slain... 9
- Obama 's Christmas in Hawaii: Carols,... 9
- Killings of 2 New York officers trigger... 6
- Senate, CIA agree torture program was... 6