CNN: Boston Marathon bombing suspect identified as ‘dark-skinned male individual’

Jeff Poor Media Reporter
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UPDATE, 2:47 p.m.: CNN has since walked back its previous reporting and now says no arrest has been made.

On CNN, network correspondent John King reported that law enforcement had identified a “dark-skinned male individual” as a potential suspect in the Boston terrorist attacks, based on surveillance from a department store video and a local Boston TV video.

King explained to “Situation Room” anchor Wolf Blitzer how his reporting developed.

“[I] want to give you some information — additional information important from a second source who has been briefed on the investigation,” King said by phone. “And I am told by sources that both [Massachusetts] Gov. Deval Patrick and [Boston] Mayor Tom Menino have been briefed on this investigation and I know the Boston commissioner, after one of the briefings this morning, went to talk to the FBI officials in charge. I’m told now that the breakthrough came from analysis of video from a department store near the site of the second explosion. And I’m told that’s the Lord & Taylor department store. It’s on Boylston St., not too far from the finish line and very close to the second site of the explosion that happened on Monday.”

“I’m also told that some video from a Boston television station also was used during the video analysis that helped contribute to the progress in that breakthrough,” he continued. “And, significantly, I’m told from that analysis the source tells me authorities now believe they have identified a suspect — an individual who placed one of the explosive devices at that location of the second explosion. I repeatedly asked whether this person was in custody. I could not get further answers, but I did get from this source a clear indication that the authorities believe they have identified this individual and that that is now the focus of the investigation. I was told to expect more information to be released publicly later today.”

CNN reports that a suspect has since been arrested.

[UPDATE: MSNBC disputes the CNN report, tweeting “The US Attorney’s office in Boston says no arrest has been made”].

King also included a physical description of the potential suspect, only offering that it was a “dark-skinned individual.”

“A physical description was given to me of the suspect, Wolf. I want to be very careful here because this is very sensitive information, but the description given to me is a dark-skinned individual,” King said. “And I want to just stop there. A further description were given by this source, but it was a background conversation. They’re not willing to discuss it on the record right now, given the sensitivity when you get into these things. You heard Gov. Patrick saying yesterday it’s so important that the people of Massachusetts and the country for that matter in his words turn to each other and not against each other. It was described to me as a dark-skinned male individual that is shown in the video. There was some further descriptions used, but just for sensitivity purposes until we get more information, I think it’s best to stop there.”

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