Boston bomber's Watertown hiding place (courtesy abcnews.com)

“Here is a partial list of the agencies that were involved in Friday’s manhunt,” Rich Abdill at wonkette.com writes. “The Boston PD, the Watertown PD, the ATF, MIT Police, the New Bedford PD, the FAA, the Massachusetts State Police, the FBI (and its Gang Task Force), the UMass Dartmouth Department of Public Safety, the State Committee for National Security of Kyrgyzstan, the Connecticut State Police, the State Department’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security, the MBTA Transit Police, and the Cape Cod Regional Law Enforcement Council SWAT Team . . .” Not including the Massachusetts State Police and National Guard, the CIA and where the hell was the DHS and their billion bullets? Or don’t I want to know. Anyway, too much?

133 Responses to Question of the Day: Overkill?

  1. And the disarmed crowds roared approval as the State took over the streets and entered their homes without warrants.

    • Can you point to a single case where cops entered a home without either a warrant or an invitation, or are you talking out of your Jim Carrey?

      • Can you explain why this 19yo KNOWN TERRORIST was not captured, even tho they had a blood trail and his scent from the stolen wrecked SUV he jumped out of?

        Why didnt they track him with a dog right to the boat, they only had from 1:30 am till 10PM that night to do it.

        Answer my question then I will answer yours.

        • There was a shootout, there were explosives thrown at the police, there was a lot of confusion and panic, it was dark. Bleeding will slow / stop over time, or be minimized with compression. Canine tracking is far from an exact science, tracking efforts are often unsuccessful. Can you answer his question now?

        • Do you have any information on the efficacy of using tracking dogs in an urban environment, where the environment is contaminated with the odors of burned gasoline, cooking from restaurants, the bodily effluvia of thousands of other human beings, dogs, cats, etc? And where did you read that there was a blood trail from the shootout in which Tamerlan Tsarnaev died that, if followed, would have led to the terrorist who escaped? Finally, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19 yr. old, was, by all accounts, not a “KNOWN TERRORIST ” prior to the Boston Marathon bombings.

      • In Boston, as yet, I cannot, because just like after Katrina in NOLA it took a couple weeks for the horror stories of abuse to get out.

        Answer this one: why did the FBI have to ask the public to ID two known terrorists when they had a file on them already?

        Or this one: why did the Craft Intl mercs jump in their armored Tahoe right after the blasts and take off?

        • Gee, Saul, where are you getting your info? There have been no reports that the FBI had dossiers on both the terrorists, only on the older one, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, and they had closed the file on him when their contacts with him, at the behest of the Russian government, had turned up no evidence that he posed any threat.

        • Yes there have been reports, numerous articles quoted the suspects mother who said the FBI had been watching her kids for 5 years, and had interviewed her prior to the bombing.

      • There was a article yesterday with a video a SWAT home invasion happening. Jesus christ Ralph, I know i’m not the only one who pointed this out to you.

      • Ralph, take a stroll around YouTube. There are plenty of videos uploaded from terrified neighbors of illegal search victims (who were probably illegally searched themselves shortly after). They show the police pounding on doors, then when the door is answered shoving guns in their faces and forcing them out of their him before searching the house and forcing all others out into the street. After being confirmed to NOT be the bomber, they were then illegally searched by officers on the street.

        Sorry, but it pisses me off that people are still buying the “it was voluntary!” lie told by the police.

    • I suspect that when a policeman says “Ma’am, may we come in and look for a really nasty costumer who might be hiding in here without your knowledge?” most people would say hell yes.

      It’s not like a no-knock raid on the wrong house.

    • Notice how reluctant the media is to mention the citizen who found the guy. But over and over they show the thermal image of the bomber in the boat while stating: “This is the image from equipment that allowed police to locate the suspect.” It’s so important to push the need for a militarized police force and spending on tactical toys, that we don’t want to dilute the agenda by reporting that a citizen saw something suspicious, checked and confirmed it, then reported it.

      • In appreciation for his tip, LE pumped a couple bursts from M4s into the boat (missing the perp), threw in 10 flashbangs (damn boat wouldnt ignite) then rammed the boat with a tank (that oughtta show em.)

        When little Melvin fell out of the boat LE clapped themselves on the back, and took all the credit while Harry the Hapless Homeowner wonders if his crappy insurance will pay for his prized boat which is now the Gilligan Express.

      • Not sure which news outlets you read, I heard a whole lot about “local hero” David Henneberry who tipped off the cops. I’ve also heard about people organizing a fund to make sure his boat is replaced in case the state drags their feet on doing it for him.

        • I was working and listening to the TV in the background while my wife was flipping channels. The reports I was heard had little to say about the actual locating of the perp by the homeowner. I’m not bashing the cops at all. Just the media. By their statements, they were giving the impression that he was located by a thermal image thing rather than the homeowner’s solid tip of, “Hey the guy is in my boat in the backyard.”

      • When they released the video from the chopper’s FLIR, it was quite plain what happened. The video began at 22 minutes after the hour. It shows the boat…and keeps on going. Then another segment begins (seemlessly) but the video clock on the data line says 37 minutes after. It was a ‘retrospective find’ we can suppose. There is no better system than homeowners and neighbors keeping their eyes open. The mass arrival of hundreds of LEO’s reminded me of 911, when every fireman in NYC rushed to the event of the year, just in time for the towers to collapse. The dramatic events seem to turn into Woodstock-for-Uniforms with regularity. Unsurprising, perhaps, but very expensive.

    • Seems to me the man would not have been on the run and hiding out had he not been being pursued so it stands to reason a civilian found him only because he was being hunted by law enforcement.

      Some tend to put the government and law enforcement down until they need the government and law enforcement.

      • Voice: please pontificate on why bomber boys were existing within our wonderful country to begin with.

        • Right, so you say, on the internet, the infrastructure of which was primarily built up by government researchers and academics.

        • Veidt that is so far and away from a retort it hurts. You remember the “you didn’t make that” bit? Wellll, flip it around in this case. The internet did not spring fully formed from the head of some single entity known as “the government” they took money from the American people and then gave it to corporations and universities to do stuff with. All the government does is push pennies from here to there, inefficiently. They don’t “make” anything, that is what they steal from hardworking americans for doing and give to freeloaders not to do, or to do poorly and cost ineffectively.

        • Taxing is not stealing. If you could please provide examples of thriving societies that exist without the use of a government I’d be happy to look into them.

        • He’s talking about his everyday life Veidt, not advocating for complete anarchy. Big difference. Nice example of how to extrapolate an inch into a mile.

        • And can you repair the roads on which you drive your car, and maintain the power grid and/or the gas mains that keep your house provided with electricity and fuel, and the communications networks that allow you to use telephones, computers, and televisions? Unless you’re living entirely off the grid — and you may be, but I doubt it — there are services the government either provides directly or facilitates, without which your daily life would become a nightmare of inconvenience.

    • FAA?-Trying to wrap my head around that one, being how no aircraft were involved-must be the Firecracker Acquisition Agency….And where was the Target Kitchenware Investigation Bureau?…..They actually had a legitimate reason to provide representation….

      • The FAA imposed a flight restriction below 3,000 AGL to allow law enforcement to fly their aircraft without hitting civil traffic.

    • Our Gov. probably asked for any intel on the brothers that their Gov. had, K. The involvement of the Kyrgyzstan Gov. like the FAA was probably minimal at best and handled thru the computer or phone. RF is trying to drive up the number of hits on the site by piling on the alphabet agencies that even where asked about the situation. It’s his rice bowl and he needs to keep our interest up.

  2. Yes, and the new norm. It was post Katrina on steroids. Including the new/old SS method of house to house warrantless searches (again).

    If this had happened in a pro-gun state, the local cops would have only needed to remove the BG’s carcass from the boat.

      • When a SWAT team is pointing a gun in your face, the question of “consent” becomes an academic one really quickly.

        • Can you point to a single instance of a SWAT team pointing a gun at a homeowner in Newtown?

        • There’s a video posted here that sure looks like the homeowner is being extracted somewhat forcefully, as cops continually muzzle sweep his house. Tell me that the guy in the video is in any position to freely offer or deny consent.

          But that’s from a well-known rabble-rousing site, so you might want to take it with a grain of salt….

        • And it was on this day, 4/22/2013, that Ralph of TTAG lost all credibility by defending the police for committing illegal searches at gunpoint.

  3. Not that I condone throwing out the 4th amendment, but having been subject to a house to house search before I have to ask…has anyone heard of anyone being forced to succumb to the search? Because in my experience, they didn’t enter any homes where noone was home, and asked, rather politely in my case, if they could enter the home.

    • I think this might’ve been the case in Watertown as well (although I don’t know for sure). I saw many clips on the news of cops knocking on doors, someone answering, a brief conversation, and the cops walking away. So, as far as peoples’ homes, it appeared the homeowners needed to give consent. The searching of other parts of one’s property and outbuildings, on the other hand, was most certainly violated.

      • There are several of them. And at gunpoint is bad enough, but they were forced to exit their own homes with their hands on top of their heads.

        • That’s pretty close to the procedures used in a ‘felony’ traffic stop. If you get pulled over because you & your vehicle resemble one used in an armed robbery a few minutes ago, you’ll be getting commands from a loudspeaker to keep your hands on your head and walk backward to the patrol car. I really don’t like the idea of warrantless searches, but can you imagine if the BG was holding the homeowner’s family hostage & the cops just walked away? The only good that’d come of 6 more victims would be the spike in HD firearm sales.

          A few years back someone was selling handheld thermal imagers with B/W images and bright red for anything near human body temp. Supposedly they worked well enough to find people hiding above drop ceilings & the like. Given how hard it is to truly clear a hose of every possible spot a human can hide in, I’m curious about what hardware & techniques they used.

          On a side note, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone official had cranked out a permission/exclusion form that said something like “All we want is the shooter, not to ask what you’re doing with the peanut butter & a corgi.”

  4. When you are playing in a sandbox, it is common courtesy to invite all the other kids in the playground to come and play with you. If you foget to invite someone their mommys will be very upset.

  5. They’re all seeking to justify their existence.

    Sooner or later, the taxpayers’ pockets will run dry (like, oh, right about now, what with trillion dollar deficits) and the budget axe will start falling.

    Let’s face it: Being in federal law enforcement is, by and large, a pretty cushy job. Pretty good pay, great bennies, don’t have to do much work, you get lots of toys after the military is done with them, get to play running-jumping-squeeking-shooting games on a regular basis, dress up like a bad-ass ninja (without having to do the PT necessary to actually be a bad-ass ninja) and when you screw up, no one calls you to account or (better yet) you get promoted into management (eg, look at Jamie Gorelick) and you get a pretty fat jump in pay. Heck, if you screw up enough, you might get a gig at one of the various Beltway Bandit consultant shops… or get a really plush gig at Fannie or Freddie.

    So if you were seeing this “sequestration” not cause taxpayers to scream and shout about the “cuts” in federal productivity, you’d be getting pretty nervous to justify your job… and get in on the latest hot case too.

    • Dyspeptic, glad to see someone remembers that the same Gorelick who wrote the over-cooked rules for inter-agency info sharing while at DoJ, the ones that prevented spreading word on the Flying Students Who Don’t Need to Take Off, got to sit on what was, in effect, her own evaluation panel, the 9/11 commission. Now? She’s just making tons in private practice due to her ongoing Senate Dem connections.

  6. What does “involved” mean. I mean, just saying these agencies were involved in the manhunt doesn’t necessarily mean that they had a major part to play. Perhaps something as simple as increasing staffing or coordinating information.

    If the requirements for being involved in the manhunt are rather minimal, I wouldn’t be surprised to see that many agencies in a search like this.

  7. “we had to destroy the village in order to save it”

    A single .22LR round to the first person responding that knows the source of the above quote.

  8. Overkill? Not in my book.

    Those boys effed with Boston.

    They bombed the Boston Marathon.

    They killed two women and an eight year old boy. And they severely injured scores more.

    They shot one cop and killed another.

    They chose to commit a terrorist act in a post 9/11 world. How stupid is that.

    Did I mention they effed with Boston.

    It wasn’t overkill at all.

    • Exactly… I know hating the government is the thing to do on this site, but they killed one and captured the other alive. From what I can gather they didn’t force there way into anyone’s house, on the police scanner they were instructed to check front and back yards of all homes, not kick in some poor guys door. I have no problem with the response even though one skinny prick made them look like fools for 24 hours.

      • So what you’re saying is there was no other way to catch these guys, but to shut down an entire city and the surrounding suburbs for a day while bringing in thousands of law enforcement officers. I think, at the end of the day the gov continued to “eff” with Boston by doing what it did. Hypothetically, what will they do if they find they were just two out of a larger terrorist network? Are they going to shut down the entire northeast and declare martial law?

    • This… The manhunt did more damage to the country than the bomb did. From a productivity loss standpoint the bombing was a bad car pileup. The manhunt shut down a major metro area for a week. Great job guys… Had the brothers tried this garbage in a free state, the Feds would have only had to send out a small forensics team to tag the bodies. Open season on terrorists bag limit of 2.

        • Except this is not a productivity standpoint it is a loss of life standpoint.
          Had it been a family member of anyone posting nonsense about overkill I
          bet they would be screaming for law enforcement and the government to find the killer(s).

          Anyone saying they would go out on their own or with friends to hunt a person down is full of crap. Once the bullets & bombs are incoming flight would kick in for more than a few people here.

        • You sure of that Voice? I can promise you I would have pumped a few rounds into that kid if he had shown up in my boat. I see that as a lot less dangerous than being in the middle of hundreds of kitted up LEOs shooting up our whole neighborhood.

        • The loss of live was insignificant and the response was disproportionate. 9/11 could have justified a response like this, the Boston bombings were a fart in comparison. I don’t particularly care what some state indoctrinated slaves are screaming. Shutting down a major metro area to find one guy is stupid. Oh and I had no problem hunting clowns just like this one with a few buddies only a few years ago. In this nice little vacation town called Fallujah.

        • +100 on Pwrserge for the win. Pwrserge should be the one with the name Voice of Reason.

      • Any lose of life on US soil though an act of terrorism is significant and
        not knowing how many other IEDs or individuals were involved requires a large
        response. You have friends?

        • These brothers killed three people, that’s 1.5 murders per bomber. Chris Dorner in LA killed five police officers, yet LA didn’t go into “lockdown” for a week with illegal searches of random homes.

        • Yeah, the LA cops just shot the hell out of every pickup truck they saw and burned down somebody’s house. A much more proportional response!

  9. Yes, and the new norm. It was post Katrina on steroids. Including the new/old method of house to house warrantless searches (again).

    If this had happened in a pro-gun state, the local cops would have only needed to remove the BG’s carcass from the boat.

  10. Where was DHS? Monitoring evangelicals, veterans, those in favor of smaller government, pro 2A people and other critical threats to America.

    DHS is broken and needs euthanized so as to not divert attention and resources from real threats.

    • DHS-ostensibly Department of Homeland Security. In actuality Department for Harassment Specialties…….

  11. “Too much”?

    How about, “too friggin’ LATE”?
    How about, “why do we hand out green cards like candy to people who hate us, when we already have 15 million Americans out of work”?

    • Exactly.

      When I see how many foreign students are enrolled in US science, engineering and medical programs without any real screening as to their background… all I see is a huge security issue that will come back and bite us in the keister very, very hard pretty soon.

      The over-supply of unskilled labor in the US now means that wages will not see any organic increase (ie, market-based increase vs. a mandated minimum wage increase) in the next generation. The structure of the US job market right now should be causing the Congress to slam the doors shut on immigration to allow the economy to rebuild labor utilization to 2000 levels again – which would take about six to seven years if we slammed the doors shut now.

    • SD just dropped a daisy cutter on this whole argument. Boom. Same argument could have been made after the fascists passed the ever “helpful” patriot act after 9-11

  12. With out knowing if these 2 maggots were acting alone, or part of a larger cell of 10? 25? and not knowing if other bombs had been placed anywhere, and not knowing what forces (if any) were supporting these 2 guys, I’m gonna say not overkill. I’d want everyone possible out looking for them. And apparently the “America’s Most Wanted” method for catching bad guys works. Publicizing the photos got tens of thousands of eyes looking for them, which played a major role in capturing/killing these 2.

  13. Yes, and the new norm. It was post Katrina on steroids. Including the new/old method of house to house warrantless searches (again).

  14. Considering how much trouble this man caused?

    No. Not overkill. Though it is kinda sad that all these government agencies couldn’t find their asses with both hands and a periscope…

    • Please. The media made this out like the guy had a hydrogen bomb and had already killed many (not 4). It was ridiculous. And frightening to watch the police state shut down a major city. What’s more frightening is that the slaves of Boston welcomed it.

      • No kidding. More innocent people killed in Chicago every Saturday night. Boston is also jealous of all the attention NYC has been getting the last 11 years.

      • The authorities have to work with the limited intelligence they can collect in a short amount of time, this included that the older brother had traveled overseas (possibly for training / contacts), and that he had been suspected of terrorist connections in the past. They also knew they possessed additional explosives (they allegedly threw grenades, pipe bombs, and another pressure cooker bomb at police during the first confrontation). They kind of had to consider the possibility that there were more devices, and possibly more suspects involved. This is a little different from the typical gang banger drive-by don’t you think?

        • I disagree. 3 killed + 180 injured seems substantially different to me than the typical 1 death (at a time) that often results from gang / drug related violence of inner cities.

        • Jake, that is so far and away from a retort it hurts. Please elaborate how public bombings carried out by individuals with suspected ties to terrorist organizations is similar to domestic gang violence.

        • What’s the difference between black babies catching bullets in the slums of Chicago vs middle class white folks in downtown Boston? None. They are all innocent human beings. Well actually, one difference: the Bostonians crave attention.

  15. Yes, and the new norm. It was post Katrina on steroids. Including the new/old method of house to house warrantless searches (again).

    Gives one the warm and fuzzies doesn’t it?

  16. You see,every terrorist incident is like a lottery for Federal agencies.With limited Federal budgets going to “the hardest working” agency,the operation who nails a bad guy gets to gloat at the next Senate Budget Committee hearing,

    Since you can’t win if you don’t show up,as soon as a bad guy pops up the Feds are all but tripping over each other like bounty hunters.Don’t be surprised if it turns out the Post Office PD sent officers on this manhunt-cant let the chance for agency wide glory get away.

    • The Postal Inspector was there. I saw one of their guys in a raid jacket on one of the endless re-runs of the video footage.

  17. It is all about money and budget. If they do not use it, they lose it. If they use it, it is justified and they get more for next year. That is why the overkill.

  18. I think it’s fair to point out that they weren’t sure it would only be one guy, and that Chechen trained terrorists are on the very high end of the dangerous scale. I have no idea what Kyrgystan has to do with anything (beautiful country, great horses, but a long way away) but I have no problem with the large number of police being called out.

    The house to house searching may have been out of line, but let’s allow the dust to settle and let the voters tell the politicians what they think of their actions once the facts are out. Martial law has a purpose, and this was pretty close to being a very good reason to impose it. We’ll see if it was justified, and if not, some politicians need to be removed.

    • Even the Russians didn’t declare “Martial Law” during Beslan school Hostage crisis or the Moscow Theater Hostage Crisis. Both horrific acts carried out by Chechen terrorists.

      • Good point! “Stay in your homes, don’t go to work”. I guess I understand about civilians getting in the way but how long were they prepared to keep people in their homes? The mission of the BG’s was to create terror. Were a lot of people afraid? It appears to me the terrorists accomplished their mission. We tend to forget they don’t care if they die in the process in fact, many of them are educated to welcome death while killing “Infidels”.

  19. What I found ‘odd’ was the number of times it was reported (abc news iirc) that people were hearing ‘automatic gun fire’, and then they would go to the tape and you would hear numerous semi-auto shots, mostly not even rapid fire (not until they decided to kill the boat, that was a LOT of shots, plus the bangs of the flash-bangs or whatever they used). One ‘reporter’ (voice-only) even said he was in Afghanistan and knows the staccato sound of automatic weapons fire, but again when it went to cellphone video of the area it was like 10-12 semi-auto shots (by my ear).

  20. No MADD(mothers against drunk driving?), their slipping. Seriously though, I think the navy would have been called if the 16″ guns would have reached, Randy

    • No kidding. If you are going to go get a ladder and a flashlight and look inside the boat, take a weapon and use it. Kid bleeding out in the boat scares me less than the hundreds of camouflaged and armored LEO’s swarming the neighborhood. Talk about shooting fish in a barrel.

    • The homeowner never got a good look at the person in the boat, so how could he know that it was Suspect #2? It could just have easily been the neighborhood bum, er, homeless person who cut himself on a tin can when he was rummaging through the garbage.

      The homeowner did everything right.

    • Because MASS is a gun free zone, with onerous gun laws.

      If he HAD gone outside with a Biden Special doublebarrel the trigger happy LE roaming the streets would have probably opened up on him with 5K rds, missing him but riddling the kiddy playground next door.

      • MASS is a gun free zone, with onerous gun laws.

        MA has onerous gun laws but it’s hardly gun-free. Boston and environs is a hellhole for gun owners. The rest of MA is, for the most part, pro-gun.

        If MA is gun free, then I must be a felon because I live in MA, carry every day everywhere and own a lot of guns.

        • Tell me all about your AR15. Oh, those are BANNED in MASS. How about your AK? Oh, those are BANNED since 1994. Got a cool Glock 17 with a 33 rd mag? Betcha dont. How about a KelTEC PMR 30? Cant get those in MASS either.

          Got all those listed above and more. But of course, what the hell do I know.

          Brag about your gun rights in MASS some more.

        • Oh, you’re a MASShole, that explains why you keep promoting the lie that the searches were consensual and the police weren’t storming random homes illegally.

  21. Overkill? When you consider that one of the bombing b@stards was taken alive, I’d have to call it a clear case of underkill.

    • Ralph, you’ve officially lost your right to claim that you support freedom if you think recreating the Soviet Union in Boston for a week is “underkill” to capture one fraking college student.

  22. Did I get my police states confused? I assumed they needed all those trained professionals from all those agencies because of the seven-round limit.

  23. Boston Globe tweeted about a “bomb drill” at the Boston Public Library (right across the street from the bombings) “in one minute” – BEFORE any explosions took place:

    http://www.collective-evolution.com/2013/04/20/video-boston-globe-tweets-about-controlled-explosion-before-it-happens/

    The accused boys were part of a drill; they didn’t know it was going to go live.

    On 9/11, multiple drills were being run simultaneously to the actual event. 7/7/07 London Underground bombings? A simultaneous drill at each of the three explosion sites. These drills ARE THE NORM, not exceptions.

  24. I don’t think it was overkill. They had no idea how many terrorists they were dealing with and how many more bombs set on timers they were going to have to deal with.

    Coordination must have been like a brain fart with all those agencies trying to get their name in the news. Ever notice when someone holds a news conference there is always a guy with a braided hat in the background, trying to look important with nothing to do.

    The big problem I saw was lack of eye protection because everyone wanted their pictures in the MSM and newspapers. IED’s going off and no eye protection. I’d have to go with overwhelming force as a good intimdator. Plus, if there were 6 more groups of 2 all over the city, what a mess.

    I’d fault there search techniques as someone should have been in the backyards looking, there were enough of them for photo ops, maybe more should have been searching……..

    • And therein lies the problem. You’ve become one of the millions of Americans who hears the word “terrorist” and instantly wants to burn the Constitution.

    • If we want to have a good idea how many terrorists we’re dealing with, the first rule of the day is to stop importing more.

      Since our betters, the Ivy League graduates who infest our entire government (from the SCOTUS, POTUS on down to our local mayor here) are so gung-ho on unrestricted immigration, they’re clearly not interested in holding down the numbers of terrorists in our midst. Therefore, anything they say on the topic is null and void.

  25. I think the ‘overkill’ point is missed: There were not hundreds of LEO’s in every location. The massing of LEO’s came when the location of the bloody man in the boat had been reported. They did know at that point that one of the two who fled together had died. They knew the homeowner reported “a man” in his boat, and that he was able to look in the boat without being shot. So several hundred LEO’s massed at a site with one expected suspect who’d oozed blood on the side of the boat. They dramatically increased the risk of crossfire, and after ten LEO’s showed up all the rest should have turned around. It was definitely the Woodstock Complex at work.

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