One of the Boston bombing suspects is dead and the second is on the loose and said to be ‘armed and dangerous’ after a dramatic shootout in the suburbs of the city.
The terrorist, dubbed ‘Suspect 1’ by the FBI, died in hospital after explosions and machine gun fire rocked the Watertown area hours after a police officer was shot dead at the nearby Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) campus.
Police warned the other, named ‘Suspect 2’, who was seen on CCTV wearing a white baseball cap was now on the run, adding: ‘There is a terrorist on the loose who wants to kill people – do not open your door’.
Police say a transit police officer has been critically wounded in the exchange of gunfire with the suspects.
Boston Police Chief Ed Davis tweeted: ‘One suspect dead. One at large. Armed and dangerous. White hat suspect at large.’
Boston descended into chaos on Friday morning as police dramatically held a suspect at gunpoint after multiple shots and explosions were heard in the suburb of Watertown.
The drama unfolded hours after the FBI released images of two men named as suspects in the deadly Boston marathon attacks and the Boston Globe has said the two men involved in this evenings shoot-out are those same men.
Police screamed at reporters on the scene to turn off phones ‘if they want to live’ as they hunted for the suspects – fearful that improvised explosives could be remotely detonated.
Dozens of police officers, FBI agents, National Guard, K-9 units and SWAT teams rushed to Watertown after midnight after a reported car chase involving the two suspects in a black 2013 Mercedes.
Police say the two suspects discharged several explosives at police from the vehicle during the pursuit.
According to eyewitness reports, two men believed to be in their early twenties engaged in a furious gun fight with dozens of police on a backstreet of Watertown.
Andrew Kitzenburg spoke to the New York Times about the view he had from his third floor window as he saw two men in jackets shooting at at least 10 police from behind a black Mercedes SUV.
The gun battle was being waged 70 yards apart and Mr. Kitzenburg said that the two men and police were engaged in ‘constant gunfire’.
Suddenly a police SUV ‘drove towards the shooters’ and was fired upon until it was damaged and rolled to the side of the road, crashing into two cars in his driveway.
Dramatically, Mr. Kitzenburg said the two gunmen then threw a large bomb, ‘They lit it, still in the middle of the gunfire, and threw it. But it went 20 yards at most.
The unknown device did explode and at that point, one of the men ran towards the gathered police officers and was tackled – it is not clear from Mr. Kitzenburg if he was shot or not.
Then suddenly, the other man returned to his SUV and drove towards police officers and ‘put pedal to the metal’.
The car ‘went right through the cops, broke right through and continued west.’
Mr Kitzenburg said that the two men had left backpacks by the car and that a police bomb robot was currently dealing with the devices.
Police have told all residents to remain in their homes while they clear the area.