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Authorities Debated Releasing Photo Of Suspect

From CBS News:

Boston bombing investigators focus on possible suspect in surveillance video

April 17, 2013

Authorities investigating the deadly bombings at the Boston Marathon have zeroed in on a man seen on surveillance video near the site of the attack.

Sources say investigators are trying to identify a person described as a young white man who is standing in the crowd near the scene of the second bombing just before the device exploded, reported CBS News correspondent Bob Orr. A surveillance camera at a nearby Lord and Taylor department store captured images of the man who was carrying a backpack and talking on a cell phone.

The man was wearing a black jacket, a grey hooded sweatshirt and a white or off-white baseball cap backwards. He is 6 feet or 6-feet-2-inches tall with a medium build.

Notice how far up in the story is the mention of a "young white man."

Investigators say the man, who seemed to be alone, put the backpack on the ground. Then, when the first explosion occurred at the finish line about 100 yards down Boylston Street, he took off. Just a few seconds later, the second bomb exploded near where the man had been standing.

Investigators now are going through cell phone logs to determine who made calls from that location near the time of the explosions. Sources say the FBI is working with a list of names of cell phone owners and attempting to match one of those to the unknown man on the surveillance

Sources say forensic experts tape will attempt to use facial recognition software and compare the images from the surveillance camera to photo IDs connected to known cell phone users. Officials say so far they have not identified that mystery man and they’re not yet calling him a suspect.

CBS News senior correspondent John Miller said that the big case Wednesday was whether to make the case to release that photo and go out and say this is the person who is being sought or to hold that back.

"It’s been a tough call," said Miller. "For investigators, there’s always a difficult choice because if the person doesn’t know you’re looking for him, he may stay in place, you may catch up to him. if he does know you’re looking for him, he may run. On the other hand, if you don’t get him, it’s always great to enlist 20 million or so more eyes in the public who may be able to give you a location right away. That’s not going to happen tonight anymore. It was going to happen earlier — they’ve rethought that. It may happen with the release of that picture tomorrow. They’re reassessing…

It’s clearly foolish to take any of these reports too seriously at this point. But this report, from last evening, does mention that there is a debate raging among the authorities as to whether they should release their photos of the person of interest or not.

Still, isn’t it bizarre that this should even be up for debate? Why not publish every photo, since it is the only current lead?

Meanwhile, investigators have found the lid of a pressure cooker that apparently was catapulted onto the roof of a nearby building, a law enforcement source said Wednesday.

The law enforcement source confirmed to CBS News senior investigative producer Pat Milton Wednesday that the lid was found on the top of a building near the attack site…

The developments come after an intelligence bulletin issued to law enforcement and obtained by The Associated Press and the Reuters news agency late Tuesday included pictures of a mangled pressure cooker, a torn black bag, a circuit board and a battery connected to wires, all of which the bulletin said were from the two bombs used in the attack…

There have been plenty of photographs of the pressure cooker in the mainstream media. But none of the persons of interest.

Why is that?

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, April 18th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Authorities Debated Releasing Photo Of Suspect”

  1. canary says:

    They did not even enlarge the faces in spite of it being 2013 and high technology. They should have showed second after second of head shots.

    They didn’t even do a close up the thugs hats which would make it easier for people who may have them video could determine if perhaps they have footage.

  2. Curiosity says:

    In terms of “high technology,” I’ve personally seen demonstrated or done:
    – increasing resolution 9 fold (not even using multiple frames)
    – removal of light fog / haze / smoke
    – 3D imaging (say of faces) from video
    – making highly blurred details (illegible license plates for example) crisply legible
    – real-time facial recognition and tracking

    These could be accomplished even if the video was recorded from TV and not raw.

    The scary thing about some of the work I get involved in – I like to get paid so I can eat and keep my house; I like doing scientific R&D, especially in that vein, and being paid for it; but… a lot of times the customer, in every sense, is Big Brother. The only thing that will restrain Big Brother is a bureaucracy or conviction from God Himself to only use the technology and authority for good. When it comes to catching criminals, of course I like working on tightly connected networks of camera and biometrics. But when it comes to being a private citizen, I hate the idea – don’t track me, leave me alone.

  3. Tater Salad says:

    The video provided below is exactly the problem with the Untied States right now. The President and the people he appoints actually believe that terrorism is NOT committed by terrorists.


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