Ga. senator remains vague over info about Boston bombings

by: Lori Geary Updated:


ATLANTA - A Georgia lawmaker revealed new information Wednesday that implied a federal law enforcement agency may have dropped the ball over the Boston Marathon bombings.

Channel 2 Action News first reported on the development Tuesday about the comments Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Georgia, said raising concerns a law enforcement agency may have known about the bombing plot before it happened.

Channel 2's Lori Geary talked with Chambliss Wednesday, pressing him for answers.

"We're going to get to the bottom of whether or not somebody along the way dropped the ball on some information," Chambliss told Geary.

As the ranking Republican on the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee, Georgia's senior senator is raising alarming questions on how the intelligence community handled the investigation of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the Boston bombing suspect killed in a shootout with police.

Chambliss said he is getting constant updates on the investigations; the ones that happened before the bombings and the ones after.

"There now appears there may have been some evidence obtained by one of the law enforcement agencies that did not get shared in the way it should have been," Chambliss said.

Geary pressed Chambliss but he said he can't reveal what the information is nor the agency involved.

Geary asked the senator if the information was "something that may have prevented the bombing?"

"Well, you never know, it could have," Chambliss answered.

Channel 2 Action News has learned from Senate testimony that the Department of Homeland Security knew about Tsarnaev's six-month journey to Russia last year.

But members of the Senate Intelligence Committee said the FBI testified it had no knowledge of the trip.

Chambliss said they're also learning new information about the actual bombs. He said they weren't sophisticated weapons but above-average, and information on them can be found in a journal used by jihadists trying to influence young people around the world.

"That magazine called 'Inspire' gives directions on how to make bombs, some of which were somewhat identical to the bombs used here, for example, use of a pressure cooker," Chambliss said.

Meanwhile, in Cambridge, Mass., thousands of mourners -- including MIT students, faculty and staff, and law enforcement officials from across the nation -- paid their respects to a campus police officer who authorities said was ambushed in his cruiser by bombers three days after the bombings.

A line of mourners stretched for a half mile, waiting to get into the memorial for Sean Collier. They made their way through tight security, including metal detectors and bomb-sniffing dogs.

Speaking at the memorial at the school's Cambridge campus, Vice President Joe Biden referred to the bombing suspects as "two twisted, perverted, cowardly knockoff jihadis."

He said terrorists attack the United States to try to get it to abandon what it values most -- its open society and its system of justice.

He told the family of the slain officer that he hoped it would derive some comfort from today's memorial service.

The officer's brother, Andrew Collier, said he was "born to be a police officer and lived out his dream." He says his brother would have loved everything about this day -- including the bagpipes and the American flag.

Boston native James Taylor led a sing-along of "Shower the People."

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, remained hospitalized and was being questioned over his role in the attacks.

U.S. officials said Dzhokhar has told interrogators he and his brother were angry about the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

U.S. investigators traveled to the predominantly Muslim province of Dagestan in southern Russia and were in contact with the brothers' parents, hoping to learn more about their motives.

Channel 2 Action News

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