Appearing at a news briefing with U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, DesLauriers said the two men, both carrying what appeared to be heavy bags on their backs, walked together through the crowd of spectators. He said the man identified as Suspect No. 2, wearing a white cap, was seen leaving his bag at the site of the second explosion Monday. The other man, Suspect No. 1, wore a dark cap.
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“We initially developed a single person of interest,” not knowing whether the man was acting alone or with others, DesLauriers said. The FBI later determined that there was a second suspect, he said.
“Today we are enlisting the public’s help to identify the two suspects,” he said. Photos of the men were displayed on easels set up in the briefing room, and DesLauriers said the images would also be published on the FBI’s Web site.
“Somebody out there” knows who the men are, DesLauriers said, adding: “We consider them to be armed and extremely dangerous.” He warned the public: “No one should approach them.... Do not take any action on your own.” He urged people instead to contact law enforcement.
Earlier Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told a House committee in Washington that the FBI wants to interview individuals seen in at least one video from the vicinity of the Boston Marathon finish line, but she would not describe them as suspects.
Testifying before the House Homeland Security Committee, Napolitano did not provide details of the men’s appearance or say what the video shows, the Associated Press reported. “There is some video that raised the question” of what the men were doing, she said.
Napolitano said it remains unclear whether the bombs that exploded Monday near the finish line of the renowned race were the work of foreign or domestic terrorists.
“We don’t know yet whether the attack was planned and executed by a terrorist organization, foreign or domestic, or if it was an individual act,” James R. Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, told lawmakers during a separate hearing on worldwide threats. “Lone wolves, domestic extremists and jihad-inspired or -affiliated groups are certainly determined to attack,” he added in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.
With the investigation proceeding, President Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and members of the Massachusetts congressional delegation flew to Boston to attend an interfaith prayer service, console victims of the bombings and their relatives and thank medical personnel and first responders.
Napolitano spoke a day after the daunting task of sifting through thousands of images of the Boston Marathon bombing site in search of a culprit suddenly telescoped to a video from a Lord & Taylor security camera.