After dodging multiple law enforcement agencies for almost 24 hours, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev — the suspect authorities believe was involved in the Boston Marathon bombings — was arrested Friday in Watertown and later brought to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where he is in critical condition.
“We are so grateful to bring justice and closure to this case,” said Massachusetts State Police Col. Timothy Alben in a news conference Friday night. “We have a suspect in custody.”
Tsarnaev, who was labeled as the second suspect in the investigation, was hiding in a boat parked in the backyard of a Watertown home. The boat owner ventured outside after the shelter-in-place order was lifted and noticed blood by his boat. He then lifted the tarp on his boat and saw Tsarnaev bleeding. He immediately ran inside and called the Watertown police, said Boston Police Department Commissioner Ed Davis.
Dzhokhar’s injuries included a bullet wound in his neck. Boston Mayor Thomas Menino said he was unsure if the suspect’s health complications would permit him to speak, in an interview on ABC’s This Week on Sunday.
“We don’t know if we’ll ever be able to question the individual,” Menino said.
The first suspect, Dzhokhar’s older brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was killed early Friday morning and taken into custody after a shootout and chase in Watertown.
Davis said the police and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev exchanged gunfire as law enforcement officials pinned him down. Authorities used “flashbang” stun grenades to disorient and distract Tsarnaev, and negotiators tried to get Tsarnaev to submit to police on his own terms.
With Dzhokhar in custody and his brother Tamerlan deceased, four causalities and more than 170 injuries have been reported from their actions. Three people died at the Marathon bombings Monday and a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer, Sean Collier, was killed Thursday night.
“The citizens of the city of Boston and this area can be calmed that the threat has been removed,” Davis said.
Menino said at a news conference Friday that he was thankful for the law enforcement’s hard work in the investigation.
“Thank you, thank you, thank you to the law enforcement officials for working together,” he said. “But today, my Boston police working together with the state police, we have a conclusion that will satisfy you.”
After suspect two was taken into custody Friday, a number of Bostonians flooded the streets to celebrate and thank law enforcement officials. Fenway Park officials took time at Friday’s game, the Red Sox’ first since the bombings, to honor those lost during and those affected by Monday’s bombings. Mass. Gov. Deval Patrick, Davis and Marathon volunteers and victims were honored individually before the game began. Sunday, Boston Bruins hockey players gifted their jerseys to law enforcement officials and first responders.
Patrick said the public’s assistance in the case was critical to the capture of Tsarnaev.
“I want to also thank all the members of the public for their patience … in helping us narrow in on these suspects,” he said in a news conference Friday. “It’s a night where I think we are all going to rest easy.”
U.S. President Barack Obama addressed the nation Friday and said many questions still remain unanswered in the investigation.
“We’ve closed an important chapter in this tragedy. Obviously tonight there are still many unanswered questions,” he said. “We will determine what happened and investigate any associations these people might have had.”