Boston Bombers Had One Gun: Ruger 9mm; Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Was Unarmed During Final “Shootout”

Boston bombers shootout (courtesy cbsnew.com)

“Even though the Tsarnaev brothers made a violent dash from police, allegedly tossing homemade bombs as they fled, police told ABC News they so far have recovered only a single, semi-automatic handgun from the two men now accused of carrying off the Boston Marathon bombing . . .  Law enforcement sources told ABC News the gun recovered from the scene of the Tsarnaev brothers’ shoot out with police was a Ruger 9 mm semi-automatic handgun. Sources said the gun is in the custody of the Massachusetts State Police lab and that the serial number on the firearm was obliterated.” The revelation means . . .

A) there was no assault rifle as reported by both the police (on the radio recordings) and the media and B) it seems increasingly likely the Tsarnaevs killed MIT cop Sean Collier to take his gun—an effort thwarted by his retention holster.

If so, this indicates C) a lack of training and preparation and D) that the Tsarnaevs may well have been self-trained terrorists.

Oh and it’s now been revealed that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was unarmed when he was captured. You know, after surrounding cops opened fire on him. usatoday.com:

The FBI would not tell the [Washington] Post what prompted officers to fire dozens of rounds at the covered boat in a Watertown, Mass., driveway Friday night. Tsarnaev was wounded when he surrendered, but the FBI would also not say whether he was shot during the finale or the shootout with authorities that killed his 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan.

But they would say what a great job they did capturing the terrorist as he lay bleeding inside a boat.

“Law enforcement was placed in an extraordinarily dangerous situation,” said FBI spokesman Paul Bresson. “They were dealing with an individual who is alleged to have been involved in the bombings at the Boston Marathon. As if that’s not enough, there were indications of a carjacking, gunfire, an ambushed police officer and bombs thrown earlier. In spite of these extraordinary factors, they were able to capture this individual alive with no further harm to law enforcement. It was a tremendously effective outcome under dire circumstances.”

And what was all that about a BB gun?

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

99 Responses to Boston Bombers Had One Gun: Ruger 9mm; Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Was Unarmed During Final “Shootout”

  1. avatarC says:

    Assuming this report is accurate, maybe someone heard reference to BB’s used as shrapnel and just assumed red ryder and that’s what got reported.

  2. avatarAlan W. Rose says:

    Wow. How did the younger brother initiate a shootout with the police from inside the boat if he did not have a gun?

    Somebody please wake me up when all the facts have been sorted out!

    • avatarswampsniper says:

      He didn’t.
      They tried to steal the cop’s gun when they killed him but couldn’t figure out how his security holster worked. If you even whisper “gun” in Massachusetts they think Genghis Khan is coming so we will likely never know all the little details.

    • avatarbedbugeddy says:

      Facts? As if we will hear truth from a Democrat? Come on!

    • avatarPaul says:

      So, if only one side is shooting can we call it something other than a shootout?

  3. avatarRopingdown says:

    Well, the 100 rounds through the boat and a few flash-bangs was still good police work, wasn’t it? Who knew? At least now we know Boston can be closed down for a day without any major side effects. Interesting.

  4. avatarPantera Vazquez says:

    As usual the press makes up BS stories, forever trying to put the fear of guns into America. No “assault rifles”, no major explosives, will be interesting to see what else the talking heads got wrong…..as for “self-trained terrorists”, Robert-they seem to have had pretty lousy teachers…..

    • avatarSixpack70 says:

      The problem is the initial report that an AR was involved will not be corrected and low information voters will probably not pay attention to changes or updates.

  5. avatarEagleScout87 says:

    So does that mean the guy who got carjacked lied about what firearms were used in the jacking?

    • avatarBrian says:

      Good point. That was a pretty cut and dry detail.

    • avatarHryan says:

      The more I thought about it, I would bet money that the “BB gun” and the M-4 were likely the same thing; an airsoft gun.

      • avatardwb says:

        M-4 carbine. no wait airsoft BB gun. no wait nothing.

        If you are up close and personal enough to catalog evidence , its not hard to tell the difference. Nothing is the absence of evidence. M-4 carbine vs airsoft look alike… easy also since they will be cataloging the real bullets

  6. avatarDave S says:

    large ruckus for weaponry that might be carried by any convenience store robber in the country.

  7. avatardwb says:

    seriously, i no longer believe these reports. So many have been wrong, even when “confirmed by a law enforcement official” . Two handguns, an m-4 carbine, and a BB gun. Now nothing? How does an unarmed person shoot themselves in the neck as the po-po now say? Was there really even a bombing? is this the right suspect? Ricin or black powder? I have no idea. I’ll believe video, when its released. I cannot even see clearly the few grainy photos that have been released. I just hope that they have not so bungled the case that he gets off.

  8. avatarDon says:

    Just proves my point that we have to close the obliterated serial number gun loophole and the pressure cooker loophole…..without closing those we’ll never be safe.

  9. avatarBrian says:

    White kind of Ruger? There’s a big ol’ difference between an LCP and an SR40

  10. avatarAnmut says:

    REALLY?

    These two terrorists were a55holes for sure – but how in the world were the police threatened or in fear of their lives from an unarmed person laying in a boat?

    First it will be these terrorists – next time it’ll be one of us.

    • avatardunsho says:

      it’s been happening to “us”
      the “voluntary” home inspections while looking for this guy, and

      http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2013/04/robert-farago/dorner-disaster-la-taxpayers-shell-out-4m-for-bad-shoot/

    • avatarPhil says:

      Gee, I don’t know, maybe killing a cop had them a little concerned. And that his brother had a bomb vest on when he was killed. I wonder why the cops didn’t just ask nicely.

      • avatargunyouzer says:

        This!

      • avatarmountocean says:

        I’m beginning to doubt the bomb vest story. After hearing that he was dragged under the car for about 20 feet I’m thinking it was just road rash until I hear otherwise. Of course, with all the bombs being thrown I think the laurel st shootout was justified.

      • avatarNigil says:

        Given the lack of concrete info even after the entire incident is resolved, I don’t like the idea that being SUSPECTED of killing a cop and wearing what might be a suicide vest gets you a 100-round handshake. What if I were to be confused for someone that looks like the perp? Should the cops not bother to announce themselves, or ascertain whether I am armed? I don’t want to be a less lucky version of those poor women in LA.

        • avatargun_youzer says:

          Agreed. I’m just suggesting what may have been going through an LEO’s mind at the moment. Not condoning their action. I imagine that the risk of a lawsuit by a suspect is less than shooting him dead.

  11. avatarWR2A says:

    Gasp! Horror! Shock! Outrage! You mean those mean and obviously religiously bigoted police were threatening and shooting at a poor unarmed Muslim angel? How could they do this? How could they shoot at an unarmed kid?

    Hmm. Clint Eastwood springs to mind…

    “That kid shoulda armed himself.”

  12. avatarDisThunder says:

    I’m not sure how many people were actually paying attention anyway, but if they were, this would be a credibility disaster for the MSM. No M4s, no gunpowder, just a couple of moron extremists, some fireworks and pressure cookers, and a little ol’ 9mm pistol.
    I think these punks were well within the means of the good people of Boston to guard against, and maybe put down like the mutts they are (were), if more of them had been adequately armed. Who needs the National Guard flailing about and doing no-warrant searches when the people can protect themselves?

    • avatarKen Hagler says:

      I wish that were a credibility disaster for the MSM–but no, it’s actually perfectly normal.

    • avatarbruce says:

      I was wondering about the house to house. Did the police enter the houses or just knock and check on the residents? If they did enter did they have to get permission from the homeowners?

  13. avatarMark N. says:

    So when the police chief says that six cops exchanged over two hundred rounds with the two boys, most of those bullets were all headed in the same direction without much effect, until the older brother decided to martyr himself.

    • avatarPantera Vazquez says:

      But the cops will be painted as heroes under fire……

    • avatardwb says:

      at this point, do you believe anything coming from the police chiefs mouth? I am pretty much to the points where if his lips are moving he is lying- well not lying perhaps, but stating bad facts which will change tomorrow.

      • In a high-intensity gunfight, 200 rounds is nothing. It would take less than three minutes to fire that many bullets from just one gun. And the media reported that the cops ran out of ammo and resorted to ramming the suspects’ vehicle. Does any of this make sense to anybody with half a brain? And you wonder why the “false flag” conspiracy crowd is so vocal about this one.

    • avatarcsmallo says:

      Are they saying the older brother shot himself now? The last story I read said he was run over by the younger brother while the cops had him face down handcuffing him.

  14. avatarRydak says:

    Truth is that if a suspect can fire at you once, they can do it again. If a suspect can throw bombs at you once they can do it again. It’s irrelevant that #2 was found unarmed, interesting, but irrelevant.

    • avatarmountocean says:

      Agree with your first two sentences. However, I think it becomes relevant when the cops unload into the boat he’s in.

      • avatarFelix says:

        *Especially* with a residential neighborhood as the background. Maybe they just wanted to show that the NYC Empire State building cops and the LA Dorner-pickup cops were just a bunch of sissies.

    • avatarcsmallo says:

      Except for that whole thing about identifying your target and all that.

      • avatarJeff says:

        Why would it be necessary to identify a target if you’re going to miss horribly anyway?

        At my home range there’s a joke: “Why do they give cops Glocks? — So they don’t hit anything.”

        Glocks don’t work right if you grip them too hard. And… what happens when you’re pumped with adrenaline? Hard ass gripping.

        I think cops probably should go back to Police Positive. They’re too dangerous to the innocent with Glocks.

    • avatarBob2 says:

      Agree. But I must add that throwing lead toward a target that you cannot correctly identify is bad police work. In the military, there is such a thing as covering fire, which is used to keep the enemy pinned while the rest of the team maneuvers, but this tactic has no place in law enforcement. nothing like a stray bullet killing a bystander followed my massive lawsuits and manslaughter charges to ruin a police department and wreck the budget of an entire city.

  15. avatarjwm says:

    Somebody breaks into my house, I don’t care if they’re armed or not. I’m not risking my life or the life of those under my care to find out. He gets shot and then the cops and lawyers can sort it out. That’s for an unknown home invader.

    If I’m in a lockdown scenario cause the mad bombers/cop killers are on the loose and someone crashes into my home I would go nuclear if that option was open to me.

    • avatarAnmut says:

      Please don’t take this as me supporting these two wastes of space…

      But if cops can use the “ends justify the 200 rounds means” on our own soil when it comes to “terrorists,” then prepare to be next in line in the slaughter.

      Two clowns with firework powder and a 9mm put an entire city on lockdown and ended with a lot of police-owned bullets down range without much to justify it. Just wait until those next terrorists are tea party folk, or Ron Paul supporters…

      • avatarjwm says:

        Those same 2 clowns killed 4 people, wounded over 170. And thanks to the confusion we had no idea what else they were capable of.

        This situation was a whole lot different from 2 paper ladies minding their own business and getting the crap shot out of them by men that didn’t even try to id them. And no, I don’t take your comments as meaning you supported those 2 pukes.

        • avatarAccur81 says:

          I agree. I’m glad one is gone for good and the other is behind bars. There is nothing for the gun grabbers to use in this incident, and it is truly disgusting that every indication is that they are looking for violent incidents to vindicate their anti-gun narrative.

          With that being said, I still have a whole lot of concern for some of the police responses, as well as the attitude that police can look for bad guys with an AR-15, but John Q. Public cannot (according to the media and the left side of congress at least). I can’t say that I feel pity for Harry Reid’s attempt to pass background checks for ammunition component purchases going by the wayside.

          Still, things could have been a whole lot worse, and I look forward to additional TTAG factual reporting.

          Keep your powder dry – and I’m glad I have an additional complete AR build. I’ll try my very best not to lose this one in a boating accident.

        • avatarLemming says:

          This seems reasonable. They have already murdered four people and injured countless others with guns and bombs. Absent omniscience I’d think any reasonable person would plan on the younger Tsarnaev being armed.

        • avatarmatt says:

          As usual the SWAT team member and ex-prison guard are glad there were attempted extra-judicial executions by the police, but in the same breadth they will hypocritically cry to high heaven when someone tries to violate their rights. Fvcking statists.

        • avatarjwm says:

          And as usual the mentally ill anarchis, racsist is hero worshipping the bad guys, matt. Every time you comment here, except for the rare occasion when you actually discuss a gun, you prove that you are completely insane.

          And at least get the info right. I don’t know if A81 was ever in swat, but tho I worked in a prison I was never a gaurd.

          And I believe you to be the statist, matt. You’re awful hung up on crossing the t’s and dotting the i’s when it comes to these situations. Me. I just want the bad guys put down.

      • avatar16V says:

        As much as I’m more than happy to ‘monday morning’, I have to agree with jwm on this one – for the scenario, the cops weren’t too far out of line.

        I have MASSIVE issues with a city-wide “lockdown” (and all the sheep who obeyed it) without at minimum somebody stepping up and declaring martial law.

        But the cops, for the facts on the ground? Meh, lotsa stray rounds but no injuries or fatalities. Lucky perhaps, but better than Los A-hole-ez.

        • avatarRandy Drescher says:

          obama had just got the crap kicked out of him with congress & just needed a big show for the sheep, nothing much else to see there, Randy

    • avatarswampsniper says:

      I don’t think you can do that in Boston!

  16. avatarS.CROCK says:

    well, glad to hear it was a unregistered gun. sad to hear a innocent person was killed for his gun. still glad the cops shot the unarmed younger brother.

  17. avatarLance says:

    Doesn’t surprise me that liberals gun grabbing laws in MA stopped nothing. No “assault weapon” was used and they are banned in MA. The terrorist had no FIOD gun card. Gun powder was not used in the bombs fire works made the bombs. And now only a 9mm handgun and several mags found. Shows why the gun grabbers lost this month they are brain less morons.

  18. avatarSightPicture says:

    It seems as if the disinformation campaign is working. You are supposed to be confused, unnerved and on edge…
    Stay calm and pay attention

  19. avatar9mm&4wd says:

    Just believe the report that makes you feel better. Either way.

  20. avatarNine says:

    I’m sure it was just a .9mm, perfectly harmless.

  21. avatarJSF01 says:

    I am going to go with not a single shot fired at the boat hit him, and his injury was from earlier. The story on how he was found was after the lock down was lifted a guy went out side and saw a bunch of blood around his boat. He looked under the tarp, saw the suspect and than called the police.

    • avatarjwm says:

      Myself, I’m curious as to how many times he was hit and by what calibers before he got to the boat. He doesn’t look like a large person and I’ve heard no reports of body armor.

      He was able to travel on foot to the boat leaking blood and carrying lead. How many total times was he hit and was it all pistol rounds or what?

  22. Did anyone ever consider they just wanted to fire at the boat because their training ammo was low and they wanted to pop off a few rounds before they had to go back to ammo shortage reality.

  23. avatarswampsniper says:

    I’m looking at the photo on this page and thinking about what I could have done from that window.

    • avatarNickbnumbers says:

      Pretty much each engagement in this ordeal begs the question: “Why are we paying for police departments to buy precision rifles and train sharpshooters if they aren’t going to make use of them?”

    • avatarDaveL says:

      I thought about that, too, when I saw the footage on Dateline last night. Then I thought “How are the police going to react to an unidentified third party joining the gunfight?”

      In truth, in that situation I’d head for the basement with my family. What I can’t believe is how many people they interviewed who were like “There was a gun battle raging just outside my window! It was just like being in a war zone! I immediately jumped on Twitter.” <headdesk>

      • avatarmountocean says:

        Reminds me of the civil war battle of Bull Run, when high society set up grandstands and brought picnic lunches.

  24. avatarChuck Pelto says:

    Keystone Cops…..

  25. avatarAzimuth says:

    I was wondering, on what order of magnitude is the difference between
    the shots fired by the Tsarnaev’s and those of the police. A factor of 10…,
    20…., more? 1 9mm, against 20+ cops w/tactical firearms out the wazoo,
    is a nothing more than a less than lethal noise maker. So unless you’re a
    dead-eye like Clive Owen in Shoot’em Up, your chances of surviving a gun
    battle so armed are slim and none, and slim left town the second Dzhokar
    jumped behind the wheel and sped off, taking his bro for an undercarriage
    ride in the park. Never take a hand gun to a rifle fight,…not if you want to
    live through it. I’m getting the feeling that Tamerlan-a-ding-dong wasn’t
    planning on surviving this, much less being held to account, maybe even
    asking his lil’ bro to make sure of it. These two wouldn’t make the first cut
    of Who Wants To Be A Terrorist? For two rank amateurs, how many cops
    and assorted Federales were assigned Watertown that night? 100? More?
    Look what amateurs were able to accomplish. What if they had been pro’s?

    • avatarswampsniper says:

      If they had been real “Rambos” the cops would still be looking for them. It’s amazing to me that with all that undisciplined blasting away no more bystanders got hit. Whatever happened to actually aiming at something?

      • avatarcsmallo says:

        That was the entire point of the lockdown. They turned Boston into a free fire zone. Any citizen on the streets would have been fair game for a “mad minute” by the cops.

        • avatarswampsniper says:

          I hunted for many years with a muzzle loader, I know what can be done on fast moving targets with one shot. Sometimes I think even semi autos just encourage pray and spray tactics. I’ve got some, had many, but the first shot is the one you want to count.

  26. avatardirk diggler says:

    And all of this justified the blatant 4th amendment searchs and seizures at gunpoint of hundreds of homeowners? The ACLU is just gonna have a civil rights wet dream over the years long litigation this will spawn. But, it is for the children(TM)

  27. avatarJAS says:

    This is how bad it gets in the media. According to Fox News on 4/22, the shooting at the boat started when the boat opened up:

    “No police were injured when shots were fired by the boat”

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/04/22/second-boston-bombing-suspect-under-heavy-guard/#ixzz2RTHuQS1o

  28. avatartdiinva says:

    My heart bleeds fo the little bastard — not.

  29. avataraweds says:

    I have no idea how police officers are trained, but after examples of the NYPD unloading at the Empire State Building shooter and hitting 9 bystanders, the LAPD firing over 100 rounds at the wrong truck at two unarmed hispanic women when searching for a large black man, and now BPD/ Watertown PD/ whoever firing indiscriminately into an object, not at a person, just how in the hell are we to believe that they are not shooting first and asking questions later? There appears to be little marksmanship, little positive target identification, and little inhibition to blaze away even when NOT taking fire or being directly threatened. It gives all the police who engage active shooters or are legitimately threatened a bad name. Our ROE in Iraq was far more strict.

    • avatarswampsniper says:

      Every one of those shots landed somewhere, got to be a lot of punctured houses and cars. They really lucked out.

  30. avatarSaul Feldstein says:

    Still waiting for any video/pics that shows Adam Lanza walking into Sandy Hook.

    Y’know, the 15 yo retard who handled an AR15 like a pro, wearing “body armor” and carrying 2 pistols.

    • avatarjwm says:

      Lanza wan’t 15 and how much of a pro did he have to be against a school full of unarmed women and small children.

  31. avatarDr Duh says:

    More detail on martial law in Boston. appears SOP for the warrantless searches was:
    1. Bang on door
    2. Stick gun in homeowners face
    3. Yell “Get out, get out.”
    4. If questioned repeat 2 and 3.

    • avatarmountocean says:

      “…they’re pointing big guns and you’re holding your daughter in your arms, but they’re doing the right thing…”
      “Rescue a family at the point of a gun”
      “…I’m so happy they were doing their job, you have no idea.”

    • avatarSCS says:

      The sheeple were “just happy they were doing their jobs”. What job? Violating numerous Constitutional rights??

  32. avatarjimmyjames says:

    When I saw all the guns, badges and tactical uniforms on TV, my first thought was there goes the constitution. I could not believe my eyes and ears. Was this really happening in the USA? Then I thought well it is Massachusetts…

  33. avatardave says:

    Wait, they wanted the MIT officers pistol, couldnt work the easily manipulated mechanism, then didnt bother getting the rifle outta the trunk?
    Im Pro Gun & Anti Stupid! Dumbass story this is.

  34. avatarMy Name Is Bob says:

    Where the hell did they manage to find ammo?

  35. avatarbruce says:

    What would have been the procedure had they come across a locked door and nobody answers the door?Or how about if the homeowner after answering the door didn’t want them in the house. Having guns pointed at them as they answered the door? is that SOP? What disturbs me the most is that the people on here seem to write very well,can put their thoughts to paper very well which would imply to me that most of you are at least slightly a cut above than most others, myself included. With all that being said,IMO your small level of pissed-off-ness really doesn’t do you justice.

    • avatarJoke & Dagger says:

      I don’t write too well and I am appalled over the jack-booted thuggery visited upon the women-folk of Boston.

  36. avatarpj says:

    I’m sorry for those hurt and dead in the bombings and the officer hurt an dead. Why haven’t we seen the video of these two placing the bomb are we waiting for may 30th( the gov hasn’t seen it but says it chilling). What makes these two diffrent then aurora, newtown, chardon, columbine(bombs also) or any other murder, why is terrorist only applyed to them, aren’t they all terrorist. Last question is why doesn’t anyone admit the lockdown was completley bullshit for the simple fact it did nothing.

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