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This afternoon, two apparent explosive devices were detonated near the crowded finish line of the Boston Marathon. The explosions took place at the 4:09 mark of the race, and approximately ten seconds apart. There are at least three dead, including an 8 year old child. At least 140 people were injured, according to latest reports, seventeen of them critically.
Aside from that, very little is known, and we are in the portion of time immediately after a major event in which misinformation travels far more freely than confirmed facts. As such, caution is required.
According to a news conference held by Gov. Deval Patrick and law enforcement officials this evening, the National Guard has secured the scene for "several blocks" around the site. That perimeter may change during the night. The FBI has taken the lead in the investigation; FBI Special Agent In Charge Richard DesLauriers characterizes the case as a "potential terrorism investigation."
Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis emphasized, during this evening's press conference that despite media speculation to the contrary "there is no suspect at Brigham and Women's Hospital". (This appears to refer to reports from several outlets that an injured Saudi Arabian national was tackled and held by a bystander for unspecified "suspicious" behavior.) Davis also stated that no further explosive devices have been found.
A fire this afternoon at Boston's John F. Kennedy Library is thought to be unrelated.
"We still do not know who did this or why, and people shouldn't jump to conclusions without the facts ... we will find out who did this, and why they did this. Any responsible individuals and groups will feel the full weight of justice."
Anyone searching for a loved one should call (617) 635-4500. Anyone with information that may be of use to the investigation should call 1-800-494-TIPS.