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Boston in lockdown as police search for Marathon bomber

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-04-20 04:54

BOSTON, the United States - The city of Boston awoke Friday to an eerie morning of desertion and isolation, as police locked down much of the vibrant town in search of one of the suspects allegedly involved in the deadly bombing at the city's marathon held on Monday.

The drama started late Thursday night, when one of the two bombing suspects, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, died after an overnight shootout with police. An army of law enforcement officers swarmed Cambridge and Watertown, both suburbs of Boston, trying to find his 19-year-old brother, Dzhokar, possibly heavily armed.

The brothers, whose photos were released by the FBI Thursday, were identified as Suspect No. 1 and Suspect No. 2 in the two explosions, which killed three people and injured over 170 others near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday.

As the day began to dawn, the city remained eerily quiet, as police warned residents to stay inside and do not open doors for anybody unless they have police ID. Schools and most businesses chose to close for the day.

As a result, the roads were deserted during the morning rush hour. Uncollected garbage and newspapers rolled over in the empty streets, reminiscent of scenes from the Walking Dead, the hit AMC show depicting post-apocalyptic America.

Heavy police presence was seen in Cambridge, where Dzhokar Tsarnaev was believed to maintain a residence on Norfolk Street, just off Cambridge Street. Many of the residents on Norfolk awoke to the large police presence. Kate Sullivan, who lived across the street from the Tsarnaev residence, said she heard something like "Fire in the hole," and an explosion sounded like "controlled explosion," in the morning, before being asked by police to leave the area.

"It's scary," said Bob Boone, who also lived on Norfolk. He was very disturbed by the fact that the bombing suspect was his neighbor.

In fact, many in the neighborhood know the Tsarnaev brothers. Jose Gomez, who works in Troy Anthony Barber Shop on Cambridge Street, said he went to the same high school as the brothers, the Cambridge Rindge and Latin.

"They seemed normal," said Gomez, and have no reputation that would suggest anything like the Marathon bombing.

Stacey Moran, another resident in the area, said her son went to the same school with the Tsarnaev brothers, and she often saw them in the neighborhood.

"I came across them in the street numerous times. That's scary," said Moran. "This is a good neighborhood."

As police conducted their investigation in Cambridge, a massive manhunt was underway in Watertown, where Dzhokar Tsarnaev was believed to be hiding. The police locked down the area completely, only allowing official and media vehicles in. Media vehicles have to go through three check points and open the trunk for inspection before being allowed into a designated area.

In the afternoon, Watertown resembled a war zone, with heavily armed police officers guarding every turn of the streets. Black Hawk military helicopters took off and land, transporting police personnel and bomb squad to various "hot spots" throughout the area, as the manhunt continues.

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