New York – New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the suspects in last week’s Boston Marathon bombing had intended to attack New York City next.
“Last night we were informed by the FBI that the surviving attacker revealed that New York City was next on their list of targets,” Bloomberg said yesterday at New York City Hall.
Surviving suspect 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his older, now dead, brother Tamerlan, had built additional bombs beyond those set off at the race, Bloomberg said.
“He and his older brother intended to drive to New York and detonate those explosives in Times Square,” Bloomberg said.
Their plan unraveled only when they realised that a Mercedes sports-utility vehicle they had hijacked on April 18 three days after the bombing did not have enough gasoline for the journey, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said.
He said investigators learned of this plan while questioning the surviving suspect, Tsarnaev, in his hospital bed in Boston.
He has been recovering from his wounds there since being captured on Friday night after an all-day manhunt that shut down much of Boston.
“Questioning of Dzhokhar revealed that he and his brother decided spontaneously on Times Square as a target,” Kelly said at a news conference with Bloomberg.
“They would drive to Times Square that same night.
“That plan, however, fell apart when they realised that the vehicle that they hijacked was low on gas and ordered the driver to stop at a nearby gas station.”
At the time, the men still had six explosive devices, including a pressure-cooker bomb of the type used at the marathon and six pipe bombs, Kelly said.
When they stopped to fill up the vehicle, the driver of the car escaped.
He alerted authorities and sparked a massive late-night car chase across the university town of Cambridge, where police said the brothers shot dead a Massachusetts Institute of Technology campus police officer.