Yesterday morning officials in the Boston area tracked down the two bombing suspects. The oldest of the two brothers, Tamerlan Tsarnaev (26), known as the black hat suspect, was killed during a confrontation with law enforcement. The younger brother, Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev (19), known as the white hat suspect, escaped the scene, running over the body of his brother on the way. A manhunt for Dzhokhar ensued in the Watertown, Massachusets area. Boston residents were urged to stay indoors and public transportation was suspended while law enforcement worked to bring Dzhokhar to justice.
The Tsarnaev brothers, immigrants from Russia and Chechnya, had been in the U.S. for about 10 years. Tamerlan was a golden gloves boxer who, according to reports, had aspirations to become an Olympic boxer for the U.S. Olympic Team. Dzhokhar was an all-star high school wrestler. The young men were described by those who knew them as average American boys. Accounts from friends, relatives and acquaintances all claim that there were no recognizable warning signs of the impending terrorist acts. The only potentially questionable sign at this point is a YouTube account that is possibly linked to one of the brothers that posted an extremist Islamic prophecy often associated with Al Qaeda.
The brothers’ confrontation with law enforcement began with a convenience store robbery. They then shot and killed a campus police officer at MIT. They proceeded to highjack a vehicle and hold the driver hostage. After 30 minutes, the hostage was released unharmed at a gas station. The hostage informed police that the brothers identified themselves as the people responsible for the Boston Marathon bombings. Police chased the brothers who were shooting at officers and throwing explosives out of the vehicle. Finally the vehicle was cornered and Tamerlan stepped out of the vehicle wearing an IED strapped to his chest. Tamerlan was shot by police officers. Dzhokhar fled the scene in the vehicle, running over the body of his brother on the way.
As police and other law enforcement officials continued a manhunt for Dzhokhar, the Boston area was placed on a lockdown. This was done not only to make the search easier for officials, but to protect the residents of the area from harm. During the manhunt it was reported that police stopped a train on route from Boston to New York to apprehend another possible accomplice to the bombings. While it is very likely that the brothers were responsible for dropping the bombs off at the marathon, it is unknown if they had the expertise to create the bombs or if they had accomplices.
After hours searching for Dzhokhar, police finally caught up to the young man hiding in a boat outside of a residence near the area where the firefight took place that killed his brother. A resident of the home went outside for a cigarette and found Dzhokhar laying in a pool of his own blood in the boat. Apparently Dzhokhar had suffered injuries in the initial firefight. Police arrived at the home quickly and a brief firefight ensued before Dzhokhar finally surrendered. He was listed in serious condition at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Boston last night.
Officials have used a public safety exception to the Miranda rule and will not be reading Miranda rights to Tsarnaev. The High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group, a group composed of agents from the CIA, FBI, and Defense Intelligence Agency have been standing by waiting for Dzhokhar to be captured. They are expected to begin their interrogation as soon as possible to determine if the men were acting alone or if they were acting under the direction of any terrorist group. They will also attempt to determine if the men had any other accomplices in the bombing.
Questions still loom about how Tsarnaev will be prosecuted in this case. Some have called for him to be tried as an enemy combatant. However, reports have suggested that the Obama Administration is pushing for trial in a civilian court.