Boston Police Commissioner Davis heads to Washington to testify to Congress on Marathon bombings
Boston Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis told reporters at Logan International Airport today before he left for Washington to testify before Congress that he understands questions will be asked about how his department, the FBI, and intelligence agencies dealt with security preparations for the Marathon.
He also said he knows people are asking questions about the FBI’s investigation into the Tsarnaev clan conducted in response to tips from Russia.
“We would have liked to prevent this,’’ said Davis. “Our job is to prevent these things. When something like this happens, you have to look at every single item of information that we have, everything we did in preparation, to ensure this doesn’t happen again.’’
Davis added, “The FBI, the intelligence agencies – I think everybody in America is looking into what they did before this happened, to make sure it doesn’t happen again. But we have to wait until the facts are on the table.’’
Davis is slated to appear before the House Homeland Security Committee Thursday to discuss the Boston Marathon bombings.
Davis said he is also going to talk to lawmakers about proposed legislation that, he said, would inhibit the ability of law enforcement agencies to quickly communicate with each other over their radios.
“It’s critical to the safety of the officers and the safety of the community,’’ Davis said.
Davis said he would discuss the federal assistance the city received before the bombing – and after the bombing.
He wants to also make sure that lawmakers get some insight into the four people who were allegedly murdered by the Tsarveav brothers.
“I want to spend some time talking about the victims here as well,’’ Davis said. “Four people were killed in these attacks and hundreds wounded.’’
Davis was asked what he thinks about criticism directed at the FBI, which had been urged to investigate bomb suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev before the April 15 attack.
He said his department has been part of the Joint Terrorism Task Force for years, and as such, has had access to “almost everything that occurs.’’
“But the facts and circumstances of who knew what, at what time, are playing themselves out. We don’t have the final report on that,’’ he said. “But to date, I am satisfied with what’s happened.”
“We are going to learn a lot about this. And I believe there is going to be a lot of criticism as there is always is after an event of this magnitude. Right now, we need to get the facts on the table ... and make assessments that are based upon evidence.’’
Davis said he expected his department’s actions will also be scrutinized. “We are answering the questions as they come,’’ he said.
“We prepared for this as we do every year,” he said. “Our preparations were extensive as they have been every year since 9/11. You know, many people after 9/11 have dropped their guards. I think, after 10 years, many people think this threat is behind us. But police have not done that. We have stayed on top of this threat.”