Boston Manhunt: Law Enforcement Update

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In Watertown, Mass., police have set up a command center in a shopping mall parking lot. Robert Siegel talks to Jeff Brady for more.


In Watertown, Massachusetts, police have set up a command center in a shopping mall parking lot. They've been regularly updating reporters gathered nearby, including our reporter, NPR's Jeff Brady, who joins us now. Jeff, what's the latest you're hearing?

JEFF BRADY, BYLINE: Well, you know, we have a lot of watching and waiting going on here because there hasn't been much information released since about 12:30 today. Back then, we heard from Massachusetts State Police Superintendent Timothy Alben. And he said that they are slowly progressing through these neighborhoods where they're, in some cases, actually going into houses and doing some searching, searching through yards and that sort of thing.

He said at that time that they had gotten through about 60 to 70 percent of the areas that they wanted to search. So they've - presumably they're further along in that process now. And at that time he said that there - a new lead had developed in the last few minutes. This was about 12:30 this afternoon, and he said he hoped to be back within the hour to provide an update. But, of course, we're about four hours on now.

SIEGEL: But just to be clear, do they seem to suggest that they believe that the man they're searching for is in this area that they're searching or do they not know that? Are they not confident of that?

BRADY: Well, they don't know that because if they knew where he was, they would've caught him. They said when they - when they were through 60 to 70 percent of the area they still didn't have their suspect. So they were continuing to search.

SIEGEL: Have you heard from residents who have been stuck in their homes all day?

BRADY: Yeah, I would like to get there and talk to them but you just can't get into these neighborhoods. But I've been able to call a few people. It's very nerve-wracking for these folks to have, you know, SWAT vehicles out in front of their houses and heavily armed people tromping through their yards. In one case, a woman told me that they'd actually come in and peeked in the window. And then when they saw that she was okay, gave her kind of a thumbs-up, you know, to make sure that everything was OK.

And I called her a little while ago and she said, yes, they're still on my street and not much has changed. Every once in a while she hears sirens but nothing that looked like progress to her. Just a lot of activity.

SIEGEL: And what's the status of the public transit shutdown in Boston now?

BRADY: It's all still shut down. The main public transit system - the trains, the subways, the buses - all shut down. Amtrak between Boston and New York, completely shut down. The taxis are allowed to run now - might not be a bad day to be a taxi driver in Boston - but not a lot of people can get around the city anyway.

SIEGEL: OK, Jeff. Thanks. That's NPR's Jeff Brady at the police command center in Watertown, Massachusetts.

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