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EARLY START WITH JOHN BERMAN AND ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN

Terror Attack at Boston Marathon; FBI Leads the Investigation; Following Trail of Evidence; Stocks Set to Recover after Selloff

Aired April 16, 2013 - 05:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Definitely devices here. I need officers, definitely devices here.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: An act of terror at a uniquely American event.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Boom. And then another one. Boom. And then another one. Boom. It's like one after the other. It's just one big cloud of smoke. Then I thought this is really, really bad.

BERMAN: The city of Boston bloodied but not broken after two bomb blasts at the finish line of the iconic marathon. The attackers taking lives and limbs but not the will of the city or a nation.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this, and we will find out who did this. We'll find out why they did this.

Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other and move forward as one proud city, and as they do, the American people will be with them every single step of the way.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Good morning, everyone. Welcome to this special edition of EARLY START.

I'm John Berman in Boston this morning.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: And good morning, I'm Brooke Baldwin in New York. It is 5:00 a.m. on the East.

BERMAN: And here in Boston, it really is all hands on deck as authorities investigate those twin bomb blasts right near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. This is what we know at this moment.

The explosions killed three people including an 8-year-old boy. Eight-year-old boy identified by the "Boston Globe" as Martin Richards of Dorchester. Apparently his mother and sister also hurt. There were 144 total people hurt, 17 seen in critical condition this morning, 25 in serious condition.

The FBI is now taking the lead in this investigation. There is no motive, no one is in custody, they say. But authorities are said to be pursuing several active leads. Overnight they executed a search warrant at an apartment in Revere, Massachusetts. That's just about five miles north of Boston. But they are not saying if any arrests were made there.

So the first explosion happened yesterday at 2:50 p.m., about four hours and nine minutes into the race. The second explosion came 15 seconds later. This is what it looked like. This is what it sounded like.

You can see it right there. You know, people who are on the scene witnessing the carnage, they simply cannot believe their eyes.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JEFF CURTIS, WITNESS: They were banged up, bad. Severe lacerations, amputees, a lot of shrapnel. You know, they were pretty big explosions. They were banged -- a lot of blood everywhere.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: So this morning the crime scene normally a very, very, very busy part of the city. It is shut down for the investigations. It's about a mile long stretch of Boylston Street which is right behind me includes Copley place, it includes part of the Prudential Center, it includes the Boston Public Library. Shut down for this investigation. The National Guard is patrolling the streets this morning.

You know we said there were more than 150 -- 140 people, I should say, being treated right now at Boston area hospitals. They are some of the best hospitals in the world. That is a small silver lining here.

CNN's Poppy Harlow joins me now from Brigham and Women's Hospital.

And, you know, Poppy, I've been speaking to doctors overnight who were just telling me, you know, these are things that they have never seen in their lives. And if they have, it's only places -- from places like Iraq and Afghanistan. What are you hearing this morning?

POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's a very good point, John. What I've heard over and over from some of these trauma surgeons is that they've never seen the volume or the quantity that they've seen rush into their ER as happened in the late hours after this attack occurred. Brave. Brave is the word that a trauma surgeon at Massachusetts General used to describe the patients saying they are brave. They are doing whatever needs to be done to get through this.

Three fatalities, 144 injuries that we know of at this point in time, 17 of those at least critical, 25 serious, eight of them children. And at least 10 people have had to have their limbs amputated as a result of this horrific attack. The ages, they range widely. The youngest victim we believe at this point in time, the youngest injured person, 2 years old. The eldest, we believe, 71 years old. So a wide range.

You had kids there, spectators, celebrating this marathon as they do every year on this holiday.

The injuries that we've seen the most of are on the lower extremities. So the knees down especially or the hips down because of the type of bomb that this was and how it was detonated. A trauma surgeon at Massachusetts General described that also one of the heads of surgery here at Brigham and Women's University and I want to let our viewers listen to what they said in late-night press conferences about the injuries.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. RON WALLS, BRIGHAM AND WOMEN'S HOSPITAL: The worst of these injuries have been injuries to the legs. There have been a lot of damage. There is a lot of blast effect from these types of explosions. So a lot of injuries to the muscle, the skin, the bones are broken, those sorts of injuries.

DR. PETER FAGENHOLZ, TRAUMA SURGEON, MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL: A number of patients will require repeat operations tomorrow and serial operations over the next couple of days. So as I mentioned, a lot of the injuries are combined. They're combining bone and soft tissue and vascular injuries. And they have to be approached oftentimes in kind of a step-wise fashion.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HARLOW: So the key of what you just heard there from that trauma surgeon is that some of these patients are going to have to go repeat surgeries. This is only the beginning of the trauma for them and what they're going to have to go through to get through this.

You know, that trauma surgeon also saying in the press conference, John, when asked how he's getting through, what the state of mind is, he said it's just depressing. We treat accidents all the time. But the fact that this was intentional is just depressing.

BERMAN: You know, it's depressing and it's also infuriating, frankly, Poppy. You brought up the fact that there are kids as young as 2 who have been injured here. You know, no surprise that there are kids hurt because that's what you do here. Kids line the streets from Hopkinton all the way to the finish line at Boylston Street. Families come together to watch this marathon. And we know that one of those killed was an 8-year-old boy.

What have you learned about him?

HARLOW: We do. CNN has confirmed that one of the three dead from this attack is an 8-year-old boy. And the "Boston Globe" at this hour is reporting his name. And I want to share it with our viewers. It is 8-year-old Martin Richard from Dorchester, Massachusetts. The paper is reporting that his mother and his sister were also severely injured in the attack. His father's name is Bill and he's apparently really a representative of the community in Dorchester.

The paper also reporting that the community gathered together at a local restaurant there last night to grieve the loss of that 8-year- old boy, to pull together for the mother and for the sister at this hour.

And I want to read our viewers a quote from another community leader in Dorchester, talking about the Richard family. And part of what she said is this. "They are beloved by this community. It is surreal. It is tragic." John.

BERMAN: Yes, there is so much feeling for that family and Dorchester is such a tight knit community.

All right, Poppy Harlow, at Brigham and Women's, our thanks to you.

The FBI is the lead law enforcement agency right now in this bombing investigation. Of course that is in coordination with state and local police.

Susan Candiotti this morning on the very first steps of the investigation.

Good morning, Susan. What are you hearing?

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, John. Well, they certainly haven't stopped since all this started. They're working around the clock actively as you indicated earlier, a lot of things to pursue. Obviously they're talking to witnesses and some of those witnesses are even those who have been hospitalized after this event.

Now no one is being called a suspect at this time. But we do understand that one of the people they're speaking with, according to our sources, is someone described to us as a Saudi national whose leg -- one of his legs was wounded. That person is under guard at the hospital now.

Again, there are -- there is a large police presence at the hospitals now. But we're told not to read anything special into this. And we are also learning about that one injured person that they are not saying that he is involved. We do know that the injury, of course, was as a result of the investigation.

Also, we know, as you indicated, that Boston commissioner is calling this a cowardly act and the FBI is leading this investigation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ED DAVIS, BOSTON POLICE COMMISSIONER: This cowardly act will not be taken in stride. We will turn every rock over to find the people who are responsible for this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CANDIOTTI: And the FBI also calling this a potential terror investigation. Of course, it is being treated by all accounts as though it is a terror event.

Now they're also working with a BOLO, this is an -- an advisory put out to all law enforcement agencies that everyone that's working this case should be on the lookout for someone that is being described as a darker skinned or black male with possibly a foreign accent who was trying to get into the finish line area before the first two explosions occurred.

They are also looking at other things like cell phone videos that people are giving to them and records of any cell phone calls that were made right before the explosion occurred with the possible idea that perhaps a cell phone was used to trigger these devices.

And, of course, John, they are really going over with a fine toothcomb the devices that were exploded and the unexploded devices as well, to look for clues as to who put this together. Don't know at this time whether this was a domestic attack or one that originated overseas -- John.

BERMAN: And Susan, of course, they're asking the public, if you've seen anything, if you've heard anything, please contact authorities right away.

And, Susan, as you know, we should mention, just because we are saying that they are pursuing one lead or another or they're knocking on a door here or there, it doesn't mean these will pan out. It just means that investigators right now are doing everything they can and following every possible lead they can.

CANDIOTTI: Yes, they are.

BERMAN: Susan Candiotti, our thanks to you. Really appreciate it.

So joining us now is Juliette Kayyem. She's a CNN contributor and a "Boston Globe" columnist with a rich, long history in homeland security right now.

JULIETTE KAYYEM, COLUMNIST, THE BOSTON GLOBE: Yes.

BERMAN: I know you've been up most of the night.

KAYYEM: Yes.

BERMAN: What are you hearing this morning?

KAYYEM: And hearing both the response and the success of the response probably protected the crime scene. I think that's one of the most important things to remember. This is now a crime scene. It's closed off. If you had had all those runners coming through, it would have been messed up a little bit. So there's a lot of praise on that end.

The second is no one should be surprised the FBI is leading. This is clearly an act of terror. We don't know what kind of act of terror. But this is what the FBI is for. This is a federal crime. And the targeting of civilians is a federal crime. So the fact that they're taking lead says nothing more than they're just going to have jurisdiction. But they're clearly working with people like Ed Davis, the Boston Police Department, state officials in terms of gathering all that information.

I will say, this is now a management challenge. You have so much information, so many agencies. And so they're going to be working together to try to make sure that all the pieces are fitting together as fast as possible because you don't want someone getting away.

BERMAN: You heard it in Susan's report, they're even going through cell phone records.

KAYYEM: Yes. They should. Right.

BERMAN: I imagine line by line at this point.

KAYYEM: Right.

BERMAN: To find out what calls were made at the very second that those bombs went off.

KAYYEM: Right. Right. Because there will be a network that provided that call. I don't think it will be so difficult from a forensics perspective to figure out how the bombs were detonated since they're still there. The explosives are still there. And including one if not more -- we're not sure still -- other explosives that were out there.

So I think that will be solved relatively quickly. But the cell phone number, obviously, will give you a clue of who to tie it to. Plus all the pictures. I mean, it is -- this was televised. And that's what people who want to bring out terror want to do. Those pictures are now pieces of evidence that everyone is going to be calling and people may not even know. If you're at the finish line, you should just look and see what you have. You may not know.

BERMAN: You know, there is no suspect.

KAYYEM: Right.

BERMAN: There is no motive. What it does feel overnight, and as we're waking up this morning.

KAYYEM: Yes.

BERMAN: There is a certain confidence.

KAYYEM: Yes.

BERMAN: That I'm detecting in the law enforcement.

KAYYEM: Yes, I think that's right. One is I think that there is a lot of information. So I won't be surprised if there's a break relatively soon. But I do think we always talk about resiliency in counterterrorism and homeland security, right? Can we bounce back? And I think what you saw was resiliency is built on the fact that the response was so good. Right? If there had been total chaos and panic, everyone, you know, would be sort of complaining today, right, criticizing.

I came here about 30 minutes after the explosions. And, you know, it was complicated. There were all sorts of runners coming right down the street. But they were being taken care of. They had those metal -- you know, those metal shawls that they give them, water was being provided. It was like everyone just sort of said, OK, that happened. We're going to move it over here. And I think that's a sign of confidence as well as competence.

BERMAN: Absolutely. I mean, they ended one of the biggest events.

KAYYEM: Yes.

BERMAN: One of the biggest races of the year, some 5,000 runner still running, with almost no glitches at all. It really was --

KAYYEM: Yes.

BERMAN: It's really astounding to see.

Juliette Kayyem, thanks so much for being with us.

KAYYEM: Thank you.

BERMAN: We'll talk to you again this morning. Really appreciate it.

BERMAN: You want to stay with CNN throughout the morning for really the most comprehensive coverage of the terror attack in the Boston Marathon. We have so much more information to tell you about.

And ahead this hour, as we said, the FBI taking the lead in this investigation, raising its mobilization efforts to level one. We'll tell what you that means.

Plus, we're going to have the latest on the search for the suspects. Major U.S. cities like Miami, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, they are all on a heightened state of alert this morning.

How this attack in Boston could affect your town today. And, of course, the American psyche. I can tell you in Boston our psyche is full of pride right now, full of honor. You know, how will the country, how will the city bounce back from the bombings? Stay with us.

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(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. DEVAL PATRICK (D), MASSACHUSETTS: We're all coming together to do everything we can to get to the bottom of this.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Welcome back to this special edition of EARLY START, everyone.

You know, marathon Monday, Patriots Day is normally such a joyous occasion here in Boston. It really is the greatest day of the year. But it turned to terror as two bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. It happened about 14 hours ago. At least three people were killed including an 8-year-old boy. The "Boston Globe" identified this boy as Martin Richard of Dorchester. His parents were among the 144 people wounded.

The two bomb blasts that happened just 15 seconds apart, maybe less. So far there has been no claim of responsibilities and authorities say they have no suspects or no motive at this point.

The FBI is taking over the investigation. They're calling it a level one mobilization. In other words, it really is all hands on deck right now.

Forensic teams, they're analyzing the evidence left behind at the Boston Marathon finish line. There may have been a great deal of it with the exploded (INAUDIBLE), perhaps unexploded ones. They're hoping to find the bomb maker's signature from what remains of these explosives.

There is a Navy bomb detonation team here helping with the investigation. No surprise. A lot of people on the scene telling me it felt very much like an IED attack that you might see overseas.

Our Barbara Starr right now is at the Pentagon covering this.

Good morning, Barbara.

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, John. Well, you said bomb signature. What does that really mean? What are investigators focusing on? What we know is, in fact, just as you said, John, after years of war, the military and the FBI civilian law enforcement have a tremendous amount of expertise in looking at these blast scenes. It really is like something you'd see in Afghanistan or Iraq.

Looking at what is left after the bomb explodes. One of the things that happens is bomb makers over time tend to put their bombs together the same way. And that is the bomb maker's signature. So they're looking at how was the bomb put together? What are the parts? Where could those parts have come from? What kind of fuse? What kind of detonator? What kind of explosives?

This is the kind of thing that begins to give them a picture of what might have taken place. Now whether it is domestic or foreign terrorism certainly does remain to be seen. But at least one foreign terrorist group already is claiming they didn't do it.

This is the Pakistani Taliban. They're issuing a statement saying, quote, "Wherever we find Americans, we will kill them, but we don't have any connection with the Boston explosions." That coming from the TTP, the so-called Pakistani Taliban.

It may be a small comfort because, of course, they claimed the responsibility for the failed 2010 bombing in New York's Times Square. But these are all clues, all things that investigators are going to be looking at in the coming hours and days -- John.

BERMAN: You know, Barbara, as we've been saying, there is no claim of responsibility in these attacks right now which is interesting. Equally interesting that claim of nonparticipation from the Pakistani Taliban. I'm not sure I remember seeing that type of thing from them before. You?

STARR: They're usually pretty quick out of the gate to claim that they did do it. So, you know, in any number of circumstances. So I think investigators will be looking at this, perhaps, with a little bit of a grain of salt. Certainly not just missing any possibilities so soon because with these terrorist groups in recent years, one of the things that's happened is they have all trained a lot of operatives around the world. You see a lot of movement.

These groups are not just the insular groups that they once were. They move across borders, they operate in different areas. Lots of collaboration with al Qaeda, al Qaeda affiliates. This is a continuing concern.

Again, we're not saying that it was a foreign terrorist group. But this is the backdrop against which the FBI is working on this situation right now -- John.

BERMAN: All right. Barbara Starr at the Pentagon. Many thanks to you this morning.

You know, coming up, there is still so many questions this morning in the aftermath of yesterday's attack here at the Boston Marathon. We will continue to bring you the latest information as it comes in.

You are watching a special edition of EARLY START. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BERMAN: Welcome back to our special coverage from Boston, the aftermath of the attacks at the Boston Marathon yesterday. You're looking right now at pictures from the scene as they developed yesterday on this what was a joyous day as it turned into such a tragedy.

There's a lot going on elsewhere in the world today. Let's go back to Brooke Baldwin in New York for a look at the day's other stories.

Hey, Brooke.

BALDWIN: Hey, John. Good morning and good morning to all of you. Let me just get you some news from North Korea.

Its leaders are dialing up the rhetoric a notch this morning. They're now saying they won't give any warning before attacking South Korea. Now South Korean leaders say the North's latest threats are regrettable. Also in South Korea, a U.S. Marine helicopter taking part in a drill. Made a hard landing near the border with the North. There were some injuries. But the military says all those Marines will be OK.

"Mining Your Business" this morning, the bombing in Boston happening during trading on Wall Street. And you can see the reaction right here. All down arrows. Stocks plunging. But today we are expecting, we're hoping for a recovery.

Alison Kosik is in for Christine Romans this morning.

And -- when you look in the past, you look at other terror attacks, i.e., 9/11, the markets obviously really took a tumble, took a beating. Today they expect a bounce back.

ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, you're seeing futures a little higher this morning. You're even seeing a recovery in gold. Gold plunged 9 percent yesterday. What happened this time obviously terrible. Terrible to see what happened.

BALDWIN: Yes.

KOSIK: The way Wall Street sees it is that the bombings didn't grow into a worse situation. Because these bombings didn't hit a specific industry or a specific financial infrastructure. You even look at trading overnight, Asian markets actually ended mixed. European markets are only down slightly. So there is some concern. Nothing huge here.

And you did see some initial reaction. There was -- right when the news came out, you saw the selloff accelerate. But stocks have been falling before the Opening Bell already because of some weak news out of China, weak news here in the U.S. but when all is said and done by the Closing Bell, 120 points you can sort of pin on the bombings. That's less than half of the 266 drop on the Dow Industrial.

So you saw that initial hit to confidence. But -- and investors took money off the table to put into safer investments. But after processing the information, seeing that this wouldn't sort of grow into something more, you saw the markets pretty much to be resilient. And that's what you're seeing this morning.

BALDWIN: Resilience in the market and a resilience all across the country for all these people reacting to the horrific story that happened in Boston.

We're going to go back live to Boston. Special coverage this morning, getting you latest on the deadly terrorist attack killing three people, one of them an 8-year-old boy.

Special edition of EARLY START back after this.

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