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Hunter Walker

Hunter Walker is a national affairs reporter for TPM. He came to the site in 2013 from the New York Observer. He has also written for New York Magazine, Gawker, the Village Voice, Forbes, The Daily, and Deadspin. He can be reached at hunter@talkingpointsmemo.com

Articles by Hunter

"We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our friends in Boston," Bloomberg said at a press conference Tuesday.

Bloomberg also said all other flags at city government buidlings will be flown at half staff.

 

 

 

(Photo of the Boston flag outside City Hall via Twitter.com/howiewolf)

 

New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said the NYPD has sent two officers to Boston in the wake of the bombings at the marathon Monday.

"We have two New York City police sergeants who are in the Boston regional intelligence center," Kelly said at a press conference alongside Mayor Michael Bloomberg Tuesday afternoon. "They've been up there since last evening. We have an excellent working relationship with the Boston Police Department.They're members of our Operation Sentry."

Kelly said the NYPD officers are in Boston are "engaging with investigators" to relay information back to law enforcement officials in New York City because of the risk of terrorism in the five boroughs.

"We want as much information as we can get as quickly as we can get it," Kelly explained. "We get very granular information quickly. We believe and the intelligence community believes that we're the number one target."

Kelly made clear there is currently "no specific threats against New York City."

 

 

 

 

 

A spokesperson for the Boston Police Department said no suspects have been taken into custody yet after the bombing at the Boston Marathon.

"At this time, we haven't been notified of any arrests or anyone apprehended," the spokesperson said.

The New York Post reported that a "Saudi national who suffered shrapnel wounds in today's blast" has been identified as "a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing." The Boston PD spokesperson did not confirm that report. 

"Honestly, I don't know where they're getting their information from, but it didn't come from us," said the spokesperson.

The Post report was attributed to "a law enforcement source." According to the Post, the "suspect" is "currently being guarded in a Boston hospital."

Update (5:27 PM): A spokesperson with the FBI's national press office in Washington DC declined to comment when asked about reports a suspect or person of interest had been identified in the bombings. 

Update (5:39 PM): NBC News is also reporting there is a "possible suspect" being guarded at a Boston hospital. After that report, a spokesperson for the Boston Police Department reiterated that they had "no confirmation" of any possible suspect in custody.

"They didn't obtain that information from us," the spokesperson said of the NBC report. 

Update (6:06 PM): At a press conference, Boston police commissioner Edward Davis said reports of a suspect under guard at a hospital were "not true." 

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said New York City's "counter-terrorism infrastructure" was being "fully mobilized" in the wake of the bombing at the Boston Marathon Monday. 

“As law enforcement authorities investigate today’s explosions in Boston, I ask all New Yorkers to keep the victims and their families in your thoughts and prayers. I have spoken with Police Commissioner Ray Kelly, and the NYPD has stepped up security at strategic locations and critical infrastructure, including our subways," Bloomberg said in a statement. "Some of the security steps we are taking may be noticeable, including deployment of Critical Response Vehicles and additional police personnel, and others will not be. We have 1,000 members of the NYPD assigned to counter-terrorism duties, and they–along with the entire NYPD and the investments we have made in counter-terrorism infrastructure–are being fully mobilized to protect our city.”

The New York City Police Department and Metropolitan Transportation Authority also released statements describing security measures being taken in New York after the incident in Boston. 

The New York City public transit system is responding to the bombings in Boston with stepped up police presence and bag inspections. 

"The MTAPD is increasing patrols coverage and bag inspections. All security personnel will remind all employees to be vigilant," MTA spokesman Charles Seaton told TPM. "The increased coverage will continue until we fully understand the cause of the explosions in Boston.  NYPD is also on alert and indicated they will give additional attention to the subway system."

Seaton did not address whether any closures or service changes were planned. 

 

The DC Metro will remain open though there will be an added police presence in response to the two bombs that reportedly went off near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. 

Metro spokesman Dan Stessel told TPM there were "no closures or service changes" planned and that there was "no specific of credible threat" to DC's transit system. 

"We have increased the number of police officers on duty through this evening's rush hour," Stessel said. 

All of the police officers who were scheduled to work the day shift in the Metro will be staying on duty through rush hour

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick's office has no information about the cause of the two reported explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon this afternoon.

"We don't have any information right now," Patrick's office told TPM a few moments ago. "We're trying to figure things out."

Governor Patrick's office in the Massachusetts State House is located a little over one mile from the site of the blasts. Patrick's office said they will release more information when they have it. 

 

After two reported explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon Monday afternoon, law enforcement officials in New York City are taking precautionary measures. 

"We're stepping up security at hotels and other prominent locations in the city through deployment of the NYPD's critical response vehicles (CRVs) until more about the explosion is learned," Paul Browne, the New York City Police Department's Deputy Commissioner for Public Information said in a statement.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's office referred TPM to Mr. Browne's statement when asked about the incident in Boston. 

A pair of explosions that caused damage and injuries Monday afternoon near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in Copley Plaza did not occur on the ground, an eyewitness told TPM.

"There were two big bombs," said Michael Smith. "Right up top in the window like in a building or something."

Smith answered the phone in a Lindt chocolate store at the corner of Boylston and Exeter Streets, near where the explosions occurred. He said he did not work at the store but was taking refuge there after the blasts. Smith said he is a New Yorker who was in town because his wife was participating in the race.

"I was standing right by the finish line," Smith said.

Smith said the explosions seemed to occur in two different locations less than a half mile apart, but both were above street level.

Update (6:22 PM): Smith contacted TPM after finding his wife and reaching the safety of their hotel. He gave further details about what he saw and described one bomb on ground level and another on the "second floor" of a building that was "directly across" from the Marathon's "VIP bleachers."

"The first one I saw was up top in the air. It was on the second floor, it blew a window out," said Smith. "The other one was more on the ground. The first explosion you saw the smoke up high and the second one was ground level."  
 
 

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