News conference on Boston Marathon bombings canceled

National Correspondent
The Lookout

BOSTON—The FBI postponed and then ultimately canceled a planned 5 p.m. ET news conference about updates in the investigation of Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon.

A Boston Police Department spokesman made the announcement to more than 100 reporters already gathered at the Westin Hotel near Copley Square where Gov. Deval Patrick and other state and federal officials had been expected to speak.

A spokesman for the FBI's Boston office had said officials hoped to reschedule the news conference for later Wednesday night. Shortly after 7:15 p.m., the Boston Police announced the FBI would make a "brief statement" to the press at 8 p.m. ET. But less than 15 minutes later, the police backtracked and said the news conference was canceled. A FBI spokesman did not respond to an immediate request for comment.

The development came after a flurry of activity in the case, including reports that investigators had identified a potential suspect in part through surveillance video provided by a Lord & Taylor department store near the site of the second bombing.

CNN and several other news agencies reported the suspect had been arrested or that an arrest was “imminent,” but state and federal officials later denied those reports, insisting that no one had been arrested in the case.

After scores of reporters rushed to Boston’s federal courthouse amid rumors of a possible arrest, the building was evacuated due to an apparent bomb threat. About a half-hour later, the building was declared safe. However, security in the area was noticeably beefed up, with additional officers on the perimeter and Coast Guard patrols on the water and in the air.

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