Transcript: Press conference with MA Gov. Deval Patrick & Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis on the deadly Boston Marathon bombings

Partial transcript of press conference remarks by Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis on the deadly bombings at the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013:

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick:
Good afternoon, everybody. Well, we’ve had a horrific attack here in Boston this afternoon. Commissioner [Ed] Davis is going to give some details about what we know so far, mindful that we don’t have the whole picture yet. But we have gotten a good deal of information. Commissioner Davis will take all of us through the information that we have and then I’ll come back and talk about some of the things and ways in which we’re going to ask people to help us help you this afternoon…

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
Thank you, Governor. At 2:50 p.m. today there were simultaneous explosions that occurred along the route of the Boston Marathon near the finish line. These explosions occurred 50 to 100 yards apart and each scene resulted in multiple casualties.

At this point in time, all of the victims have been removed from the scene. We have sent officers to hospitals to be in touch with family members and possible witnesses.

We immediately activated a system of response that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the federal government has in place for these types of incidents. My first two calls were to the Special Agent in Charge of the FBI and to the Colonel of the State Police – both Rick DesLauriers and Tim Alben immediately sent resources.

We have at this point in time determine that there has been a third incident that has occurred. There was an explosion that occurred at the JFK Library. So this is very much an ongoing event at this point in time.

We are not certain that these incidents are related but we are treating them as if they are.

We’re recommending to people that they stay home, that if they’re in hotels in the area that they return to their rooms, and that they don’t go any place and congregate in large crowds. We want to make sure we completely stabilize the situation.

We are setting up two telephone numbers that are very important. The first one is for family of victims – people who are trying to locate people. That number is 617-635-4500 – that is the Mass. hotline. The second number – if anyone saw anything at this incident, if anybody knows of any information that could lead to the arrest or prosecution of the individual responsible for this, they should call us at 1-800-494-TIPS, that’s 1-800-494-TIPS. That line will be staffed up tonight.

Along with the FBI and the State Police, we are working with the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. We have a General here from the Massachusetts National Guard, who has assisted in securing the perimeter. And we have additional assets from other agencies who volunteering to assist us.

After this incident occurred, there were certainly a lot of people who were running from the scene. Some of the deposited bags and parcels they were carrying. Each one of those bags and parcels is being treated as a suspicious device at this point in time. We have multiple EOD teams that are checking each one of these bags. But at this point, we have not found another device.

The three incidents that have occurred – two of them occurred simultaneously on Boylston Street and the third one occurred at JFK [Library] about a half hour ago.

People should be calm but they should understand this is an ongoing event and they should understand we need all the information that we can get available to us.

Thank you.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick:
Ed, thank you very much. I want to thank the Commissioner. I had a call from the President about a half an hour ago, who assured us that we would have full cooperation of the FBI, whose SAC is here, and the ATF, who are also on the ground. We have, as the Commissioner said, we – the State Police, the National Guard fully deployed and we thank them for their assistance. The Fire Marshal – the City Fire Marshal is here as well. So a lot of coordination in a very fluid situation.

We are asking that people stay out of crowds and calmly make their way home or, if they’re visiting, back to their hotels. All of the hotels security will be prioritized at the outset.

Again, if people have information please use those tip lines. This is very, very important that we get as current information as we can as quickly as possible.

Happy to take any questions.

Question: [Inaudible]

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick:
You know, the marathon is a pretty special day around here as you know. I started this morning visiting Mayor Menino in the hospital, who was devastated that he couldn’t be at the marathon today. He’s on his way here now, I think. Am I right? From the hospital so obviously he is as concerned as the rest of us are about the safety of the people who come for this iconic experience here in the city.

Question:
…Are you looking for specific kind of truck…?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
No. There is no specific type of truck that we’re looking for at this point in time. We are looking for any information that people have as to what they saw or might have heard at the site of the explosion or coming and going. We’re investigating all leads right now.

Question:
What about the death and injury toll?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
We don’t have the number of casualties at this point in time. This is very early in the investigation, and I want to get out here to give you as much information as we have. But we cannot tell you exactly how many people have been injured…

Question: [Inaudible]

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
That was a controlled explosion on Boylston Street but there was a third explosion at JFK Library that we believe is related.

Question: [Inaudible]

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
That was not – as I explained earlier, there are a number of parcels that have been dropped by people on the parade route – on the race route. Anything that’s out there right now is being viewed as a suspicious device and we are clearing each one of those items with an EOD team. They may be blowing things up over the course of the next few hours. But at this point in time, we have not found another device on Boylston Street.

Question:
Has there been any warning…?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
None. We talk about the threat picture all the time as we lead up to this particular event and we have no information that this was going to happen.

Question:
Tell us what happened at JFK…?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
It’s literally just unfolding. I don’t have specifics…

Question: [Inaudible]

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
We got reports after 3 p.m. that there was an explosion there.

Question:
Commissioner, any injuries at JFK Library?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
None that we know of.

Question:
Is this a terrorist attack…?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
We’re not being definitive on this right now but you can reach your own conclusions based upon what happened.

Question:
…Has anyone contact police trying to claim responsibility for this?

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis:
At this point in time, no. Every asset of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the federal government is either here or coming here. As the Governor said, the President has talked directly to the Mayor as well as the Governor and I had a personal conversation with the Director of the FBI who pledged any help that we need. So we are stabilizing the situation at this point in time but people should be cautious.

That’s all. Thank you all very much.

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6 Comments on “Transcript: Press conference with MA Gov. Deval Patrick & Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis on the deadly Boston Marathon bombings

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  6. The “inaudible” question from a reporter went like this: “Will this event in conjunction with homeland security work towards removing more of our civil liberties?” Answer from the gov”No.”

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