Boston Police has confirmed the arrest of Dzhokhar Tsarnev, also known as “Suspect 2,” who was declare wanted in the Boston Marathon bombing that killed three people and injured hundreds more.
Reports say the 19-year-old college student was captured wounded, but alive on Friday evening. Dzhokhar was found hiding out in a boat parked in a backyard on Friday evening, the media reports.
Boston police took to Twitter to announce, “Suspect in custody. Officers sweeping the area. Stand by for further info.”
The Boston Globe newspaper quoted the mayo of Boston, Thomas Menino, as saying, “We got him.”
The bloody capture of the medical student comes four days after the double bombings on Boylston street, the venue of the Boston Marathon, and only one day after FBI investigations revealed Dzhokhar and his 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan Tsarnev, as suspects in the bombings.
The brothers, who were born in Chechnya and migrated to the United States, were picked out on CCTV footage.
Authorities first identified Tamerlan, seen wearing a black baseball cap, as a suspect, but further investigation soon led them to Dzhokhar, wearing a white cap faced backwards, as his accomplice. They were both seen carrying backpacks, suspected to hold the time-bombs that ripped through the heart of Massachusetts.
The explosions claimed three lives, including an eight-year-old boy, and over 180 people were injured.
Images of the suspects was released to the press on Thursday afternoon and the hunt for the two men intensified in the early hours of Friday when police were called to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) campus, Channel 4 News reports.
The brothers had reportedly attacked a 7-Eleven near the campus and there shot a police officer, 26-year-old Sean Collier (top-right corner in image above), multiple times. He was taken to the Massachusetts General Hospital, but did not survive.
Dzhokhar and Tamerlan reportedly hijacked a Mercedes SUV before fleeing to the Watertown district.
Heavily-armed police and SWAT teams trailed the brothers to the town where a heated gun battle between authorities and the suspects ensued. Neighbours reported hearing gunshots and explosions. Authorities say the brothers threw explosives at law enforcement and had explosives strapped to them.
Tamerlan was killed in the firefight, but his younger brother Dzhokhar escaped. The city was on lock down as police and detectives combed through the town in search of the 19-year-old suspect, who they cautioned was “armed and dangerous.”
It wasn’t how his friends and family would describe him.
Those who knew Dzhokhar described him as friendly, and had nothing but nice things to say about him and expressed shock at his involvement in the heinous act of terror.
ABC News in a report confirming that Dzhokhar is in custody, stressed that they are not certain of his health status.
Daily Mail reported that he is on his way to an undisclosed hospital for treatment for “as-yet undetermined injuries.”
Neighbors reported that the suspect was “covered in blood” as he was taken away by law enforcement officials.
His arrest was cause for celebration in Boston where thousands took to once empty streets to celebrate his capture. Boston Police Commissioner, Ed Davis said on Twitter: “It’s a proud day to be a Boston police officer. Thank you all.”
While many rejoice at the take-down of the suspects, one killed in a gun battle with police and the second recently captured, it is heartbreak for at least one man, Anzor Tsarnev, father of the suspects who described Dzhokhar as “a true angel.”
“Dzhokhar is a second-year medical student in the U.S. He is such an intelligent boy. We expected him to come on holidays here,” Anzor said.
Speaking to reporters at his home in Dagestan, the grieving father, condemned the killing of Tamerlan, wishing instead that police had captured his sons alive and carried out a proper investigation.
He refused to believe the reports on the news about his sons. Anzor was proud of Dzhokhar who was studying at a Massachusetts college and said he had always urged him to focus on his studies.
What’s next for Dzhokhar? ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl wrote:
Now that authorities have captured Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19-year-old believed to be the second suspect in the bombings at the Boston Marathon on Monday, federal law enforcement officials are invoking the public safety exception regarding his Miranda rights, a senior Justice Department official told ABC News.
The exception, according to the FBI‘s website, “permits law enforcement to engage in a limited and focused unwarned interrogation and allows the government to introduce the statement as direct evidence.”
He goes on to say that the High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group (HIG) have been on standby to interrogate the suspect the moment he is taken in.
The group, set up in 2009, consists of FBI, CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency.