Boston bombing: One suspect killed, manhunt underway for the second

Federal Marshals Review Security in Wake of Ricin Mailings to Obama, Senator

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Federal marshals review security in wake of ricin mailings to Obama, senator
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By Brendan Kirby | bkirby@al.com
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on April 17, 2013 at 5:15 PM, updated April 18, 2013 at 9:06 AM
A U.S. Capitol Police HAZMAT vehicle is parked at a mail processing facility for congressional mail in Prince George’s County, where a letter addressed to Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., tested positive for ricin, Tuesday, April 16, 2013, in Hyattsville, Maryland. Officials from the U.S. Marshals Service in Mobile, Alabama, said they are monitoring security at the federal courthouse in Mobile, Alabama. (AP Photo/Molly Riley)

MOBILE, Alabama – Officials from the U.S. Marshals Service today reviewed security procedures as they monitored news of letters containing a toxic substance sent to top government officials.

Federal authorities said they intercepted letters addressed to President Barack Obama and U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss. and containing ricin.

Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Tuscaloosa, also received a suspicious package.

Ed Eversman, the supervisor of the Mobile office of the Marshals Service, said the agency is keeping an eye on those developments, as well as the bombing of Monday’s Boston Marathon. He said the agency, which has responsibility for the safety of the courthouse, does not discuss specific security measures.

“If there’s a threat going on somewhere else, it affects everyone throughout the country,” he said. “We take notice of anything that is going on throughout the country.”

Like mail sent to congressional offices, Eversman said correspondence sent to the federal courthouse in Mobile undergoes screening before it reaches its intended recipients.

“All mail is thoroughly checked and scanned,” he said. “We have the means to sanitize it and respond.”

On the courthouse side of Mobile Government Plaza today, there was no obvious sign of increased security. Courthouse police officers were monitoring a metal detector and X-ray machine as always.

A spokesman for the courthouse police did not return phone calls seeking additional information.

8 Year Old Boy Killed in Boston Marathon Bombing Demanded Peace After Trayvon Martin Shooting

Martin Richard, 8-year-old killed in Boston Marathon, made demand for ‘peace’ after Trayvon Martin shooting – NY Daily News

There’s now a face on Monday’s terror attack at the Boston Marathon: A devastating photo of a now-dead 8-year-old boy holding a poster calling for an end to violence.

“No more hurting people. Peace,” is the message held by Martin Richard in his classroom last April — part of a lesson on the shooting of Trayvon Martin, according to a Facebook post by Richard’s teacher Rachel Moo.

The picture quickly touched people the world over.

“My prayer is that we all live by Martin’s words … by following his example,” Lucia Brawley, a friend of Moo, posted under Martin’s picture.

Eight-year-old Martin Richard, pictured above, was killed in an explosion at the Boston Marathon as he waited to give his father a hug at the finishing line. Denise Richard suffered a brain injury and his younger sister lost a leg in the blast.

Whitehotpix/ZUMAPRESS.com

Eight-year-old Martin Richard, pictured above, was killed in an explosion at the Boston Marathon as he waited to give his father a hug at the finishing line. Denise Richard suffered a brain injury and his younger sister lost a leg in the blast.

Two members of the Richard family were also seriously injured in the second of the two deadly blasts near the finish line of the 26.2-mile marathon.

The family of five had just gotten ice cream and were on the sidelines trying to identify friends running by, Rep. Stephen Lynch, a friend of the family for 25 years, told the Associated Press.

After hearing the first blast, the Richards were scrambling over barriers to get to the street when the second bomb went off.

Martin was killed — one of three victims who died in the explosions that were described by President Obama as an “act of terror.”

Neighbors hug outside the home of the Richard family.

Michael Dwyer/AP

Neighbors hug outside the home of the Richard family.

His 6-year-old sister, Jane, lost a leg. His mother, Denise — a librarian at Neighborhood House Charter School where he Martin attended the third grade — suffered a serious brain injury. They are among the 170 injured by the bombs.

"My dear son Martin has died from injuries sustained in the attack on Boston. My wife and daughter are both recovering from serious injuries,” dad Bill Richard said in a statement. “We thank our family and friends, those we know and those we have never met, for their thoughts and prayers. I ask that you continue to pray for my family as we remember Martin.”

Bill Richard, 42, and the oldest child, Henry, were not seriously injured, but doctors did remove ball bearings from Bill’s leg, said Lynch (D-Mass.).

“Ball bearings are meant as anti-personnel munitions,” he added. “They were trying to cause carnage here.”

"PEACE" is written on the sidewalk in front of the Richard house in Dorchester.

Michael Dwyer/AP

"PEACE" is written on the sidewalk in front of the Richard house in Dorchester.

PHOTOS: TWO EXPLOSIONS ROCK BOSTON MARTHON FINISH LINE

Bill Richard is widely known as an active member of the historic Dorchester neighborhood where he lives.

“They are beloved by this community. They contribute in many ways. That’s why you see this outpouring,” City Councilor at Large Ayanna Pressley told the Boston Globe.
“It’s surreal, it’s tragic, it’s incomprehensible. Everyone … is trying to comfort one another and be prayerful.”

A candle burned in front of the Richard home Tuesday morning.

Tammy Lynch, right, comforts her daughter Kaytlyn, 8, after leaving flowers and some balloons at the Richard house.

Michael Dwyer/AP

Tammy Lynch, right, comforts her daughter Kaytlyn, 8, after leaving flowers and some balloons at the Richard house.

Children dropped off flowers and balloons at the front door. One little girl left pink flowers. Another carried orange, blue and pink balloons. An overturned child’s bicycle helmet lay in the front yard.

Nine-year-old twins Alejandro and Andres Calderon remembered their pal as a top-notch soccer player who once dropped a sandwich, caught it on his foot, and then ate it on a dare.

"Say you were at the beach with him on a hot day — You would have fun with him," said Andres. “He wasn’t a bully or mean to anybody."

“He had a lot of friends and I’m pretty sure all of them liked him because he was very joyful," added Alejandro. "He would joke about food coming to life."

Richard Martin, 8, who died during yesterday's explosion at the Boston Marathon.

Rachel Moo via Facebook

Richard Martin, 8, who died during yesterday’s explosion at the Boston Marathon.

The kids, like the adults accompanying them, were dejected.

"He’d try to make everyone happy but (now) he can’t because he passed away," said Alejandro.

The twins left behind a soccer ball from a game their team had recently won, a poignant tribute for a child.

"I think of him as one of the MVP’s of the team," said Andres.

This is Martin, 8. He died in the Boston bombing yesterday. He was at the finish line with his family, waiting for his dad to cross. His mother and little sister were catastrophically injured. He was the student of our dear friend, Rachel Moo. His message resonates powerfully today. My prayer is that we all live by Martin's words, paying tribute to his too-brief, but immeasurably valuable life by following his example.

Lucia Brawley via Facebook

This is Martin, 8. He died in the Boston bombing yesterday. He was at the finish line with his family, waiting for his dad to cross. His mother and little sister were catastrophically injured. He was the student of our dear friend, Rachel Moo. His message resonates powerfully today. My prayer is that we all live by Martin’s words, paying tribute to his too-brief, but immeasurably valuable life by following his example.

Martin’s school, where Jane was in the first grade, also was grieving.

RELATED: BOSTON BOMBS WERE MADE FROM PRESSURE COOKERS

“He was a bright, energetic young boy who had big dreams and high hopes for his future. We are heartbroken,” the Neighborhood House school, which has a student body of 400, said in a statement.

“They are a wonderful family and represent the very best this city has to offer.”

Neighbors come to pay their respects at the Richard house in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, Tuesday, April 16, 2013.  Martin Richard, 8, was killed in Monday's bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

Michael Dwyer/AP

Neighbors come to pay their respects at the Richard house in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, Tuesday, April 16, 2013. Martin Richard, 8, was killed in Monday’s bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

A teacher at the school — which was dispatching grief counselors to students, staff and families Tuesday — concurred.

“They’re just sweetest, nicest family you could meet," said Holly Moulton.

The happy kids were a common sight on their street.

Martin was "a very outgoing, wonderful little kid. He was just adorable," said neighbor Jane Sherman, 64.

Jacqueline Myers (R) and her ten year-old daughter Amira walk away after leaving a teddy bear on the door step of eight year-old Martin Richard's home in the Dorchester neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts April 16, 2013. Amira Myers was a schoolmate of Martin Richard. News reports say that Martin Richard was one of the victims of two explosions which hit the Boston Marathon as runners crossed the finish line on Monday killing at least three people and injuring over 100 others.      REUTERS/Brian Snyder    (UNITED STATES - Tags: CRIME LAW CIVIL UNREST SPORT ATHLETICS)

BRIAN SNYDER/REUTERS

Jacqueline Myers (R) and her ten year-old daughter Amira walk away after leaving a teddy bear on the door step of eight year-old Martin Richard’s home in the Dorchester neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts April 16, 2013. Amira Myers was a schoolmate of Martin Richard. News reports say that Martin Richard was one of the victims of two explosions which hit the Boston Marathon as runners crossed the finish line on Monday killing at least three people and injuring over 100 others. REUTERS/Brian Snyder (UNITED STATES – Tags: CRIME LAW CIVIL UNREST SPORT ATHLETICS)

She added that Martin, Jane and his 12-year-old brother were always playing soccer, hockey and riding bikes.

Jane is “adorable — a little tomboy. Always climbing trees,” Sherman said.

One of Martin and Jane’s fellow students at the school, Jaelyn Taylor, 11, brought a stuffed monkey to drop off at the mourning Richard home.

“It was kind of scary and surprising because it was so close," Taylor said of the attacks.

Two people leave flowers on the door step of eight-year-old Martin Richard's home in the Dorchester neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts April 16, 2013. News reports say that Martin Richard was one of the victims of two explosions which hit the Boston Marathon as runners crossed the finish line on Monday killing at least three people and injuring over 100 others.      REUTERS/Brian Snyder    (UNITED STATES - Tags: CRIME LAW CIVIL UNREST SPORT ATHLETICS)

BRIAN SNYDER/REUTERS

Two people leave flowers on the door step of eight-year-old Martin Richard’s home in the Dorchester neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts April 16, 2013. News reports say that Martin Richard was one of the victims of two explosions which hit the Boston Marathon as runners crossed the finish line on Monday killing at least three people and injuring over 100 others. REUTERS/Brian Snyder (UNITED STATES – Tags: CRIME LAW CIVIL UNREST SPORT ATHLETICS)

A friend of the family said she’d remember Martin’s smile.

“What a gift. To know him was to love him,” Judy Tuttle said of the 8-year-old victim.

RELATED: BOSTON MARATHON SHOCKWAVE FELT IN NYC

She recalled recently sitting at the dining room table having tea with Denise Richard, 43, while the boy did his homework.

8-year-old Martin Richard, seen in this Facebook photo, was killed in the explosions at the Boston Marathon

Facebook

8-year-old Martin Richard, seen in this Facebook photo, was killed in the explosions at the Boston Marathon

“He had that million-dollar smile and you never knew what was going to come out of him. Denise is the most spectacular mother that you’ve ever met and Bill is a pillar of the community. It doesn’t get any better than these people.”

Stunned neighbors struggled to comprehend the tragedy.

One wrote the word “PEACE” in chalk on the Richards’ driveway.

“(They’re a) great family, actually,” said neighbor Wally Sorocky. “How does anyone deal with this? Hopefully (the mom) can pull through this. It’s horrible."

Medical workers aid injured people at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. Two explosions shattered the euphoria of the Boston Marathon finish line on Monday, sending authorities out on the course to carry off the injured while the stragglers were rerouted away from the smoking site of the blasts. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Charles Krupa/AP

Medical workers aid injured people at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon following an explosion in Boston, Monday, April 15, 2013. Two explosions shattered the euphoria of the Boston Marathon finish line on Monday, sending authorities out on the course to carry off the injured while the stragglers were rerouted away from the smoking site of the blasts. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Lily Huynh said her 6-year-old daughter took singing lessons with Jane at nearby All Saints Church.

“I have small children like her and its terrible to lose a child like that — and the little one is hurt. We’re very sad," said Huynh.

She added that the attack had sullied the marathon — a rite of spring the Richard family wanted to enjoy like so many other Bostonians.

"It’s a long winter and everybody looks forward to being outdoors,” Huynh said. “It’s a cowardly act."

Martin Richard, an 8-year-old boy from Dorchester, was killed in the blast at the Boston Marathon. His mother and sister were also critically injured.

WHDH

Martin Richard, an 8-year-old boy from Dorchester, was killed in the blast at the Boston Marathon. His mother and sister were also critically injured.

Monday night, Sherman got a glimpse of Bill Martin coming home at 10:30 p.m. He was still in hospital scrubs.

"He looked absolutely horrendous. He was as white as a sheet," Sherman said.

“I said, ‘Bill is anything wrong?’ He didn’t answer."

A friend with William could only respond: “Martin died.”