Yesterday, federal law enforcement officials began circulating images of two persons of interest they want to question further about Monday's bombings at the annual running of the Boston Marathon. Other news organizations have declined to publish the two men's images until an arrest is actually made, or at least federal officials are willing to step in front of a microphone and publicly state that they have probable cause to believe these two men are suspects they would like to question. Recall that the FBI spent months trying to blame Steven Hatfill for the 2001 Anthrax mailings before they finally admitted that he was innocent and then years later blamed a dead guy. Although federal officials are circulating images of two men, the Post reports they do not have enough evidence to make an arrest of the two men they have identified. Even worse, the Post doesn't even know whether the images of the two men being circulated are the same men shown in the image they published on today's front page!
Investigators probing the deadly Boston Marathon bombings are circulating photos of two men spotted chatting near the packed finish line, The Post has learned.
In the photos being distributed by law-enforcement officials among themselves, one of the men is carrying a blue duffel bag. The other is wearing a black backpack in the first photo, taken at 10:53 a.m., but it is not visible in the second, taken at 12:30 p.m.
“The attached photos are being circulated in an attempt to identify the individuals highlighted therein,” said an e-mail obtained by The Post. “Feel free to pass this around to any of your fellow agents elsewhere.” . . .
Meanwhile, officials have identified two potential suspects who were captured on surveillance videos taken shortly before the deadly blasts, law-enforcement sources told The Post yesterday.
Authorities know the names of the two men, but do not have enough evidence to make an arrest for Monday’s attack, which killed three and wounded 176, the sources said.
It was not immediately clear if the men in the law-enforcement photos are the same men in the surveillance videos. (emphasis added)I've found numerous Internet website running images of men said to be suspects in the bombing. On one site, two men identified as Navy SEALS wearing large backpacks are fingered as the bombers. On another website, a disheveled, bearded man holding a backpack in his hands, who is identified as an agent for the Israeli Mossad, is identified as the bomber. Numerous websites have shown images of a man who appears to be running away from the bomb scene near the finish line with tattered clothing. Interestingly, at least one graphic amateur video on YouTube showing several of the injured persons at that scene of the first bombing shows this same man walking back towards the site of the bombing a short while later holding in his bloodied hands what little remained of the pants practically blown off him during the bomb blast. The Boston Globe is reporting that law enforcement officials have "clear video images" of the two men it plans to release later today in hopes of identifying the individuals. That conflicts with the Post's claim that federal officials already know the names of the two men. Interestingly, the Saudi foreign student, who the Post first identified as a person of interest but later cleared by federal authorities, has reportedly been removed from the country for national security reasons after President Obama had an unscheduled meeting with the Saudi's foreign minister.
UPDATE: So what were these two guys with backpacks and cell phones doing when the bombs went off?
ABC News is reporting that a 17-year old fingered by the Post this morning denies he's the bomber. He apparently was one of the persons federal authorities circulated images of yesterday, but he insists he's innocent and went to the police to tell them so. I can see the lawsuit already.
Oh, now it's supposed to be this guy.