Controlled Explosion to Take Place At Tsarnaev House in Cambridge


In a news conference at about 12:30 PM on Friday, Massachusetts authorities announced that they are going to perform a controlled explosion on Norfolk Street in Cambridge. Massachusetts State Police Colonel Timothy Alben did not elaborate on the reason for the operation except to say that it was being done out of “an abundance of caution.”

The apartment is believed to be connected to the family of the suspected perpetrators of the Boston Marathon bombing, two brothers, Tamerlan Tsarnaev (26) and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (19). They arrived in the United States in 2003 after their family, which had fled worn torn Chechnya, was granted asylum. The two brothers lived in Cambridge Massachusetts for nearly ten years.

It was not immediately clear if the planned explosion was to be conducted on items found at the scene, or on the door to the apartment, or if the apartment itself would be detonated in order to disable a booby trap on the premises. It should be noted that in the investigation of the Aurora, Colo. movie theater shootings last year, police who arrived at the suspect’s apartment encountered elaborate booby traps. While still speculation at this point, this is likely to be authorities’ minds. The two brothers apparently possessed a large amount of IEDs and other explosive devices. After he was killed in a shootout earlier today, police found an explosive vest strapped to the body of Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

This Norfolk Street location is separate from the location of another massive police operation in nearby Watertown, six miles northwest of Boston, where police are conducting a house by house search for the remaining suspect, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Colonel Alben stated in the news conference that that search was 60-70% complete.