Florida runner helps crack bombing case

Marathoner gave FBI key photo of Suspect #2

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. - Never underestimate the power of a cell phone camera.  That's the lesson from the quick action of a marathon runner from Jacksonville Beach, who had the wherewithal to snap a photo of the mayhem of the Boston bombings shortly after the explosions.

"My first reaction as people were really charging me, you know, it was a stampede, and I could either flee or go help," said David Green, a multi-year participant of the race.

"I pulled my camera out and took one snapshot."

It would turn out to be a major clue in identifying the second suspected bomber.  

Green said he submitted his picture to the FBI, but he couldn't identify anything significant in the photo.  In fact, he left Boston feeling disappointed he didn't do more to help those who were hurt in the bombings.

"Just being very emotional and very sad that you're kind of helpless," Green said.  "You see people dying, or just maimed like that," he said.

Green said when the FBI began releasing pictures showing the suspects, he spotted his own photo.  He said he talked to an investigator, who told him he had the best picture of the so-called "white hat" suspect, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

"You could see a very young person, and you could see the backpack was gone," Green said.  "He dropped the bomb and now he didn't have it anymore."

What was an emotional roller coaster of a week for Green ended on a high note.  The runner said it was like winning the race itself.

"My God, I actually think I hit the lottery," Green said.  "I took that one picture that could have been helpful.  So it's about the greatest win I could have had."

Print this article Back to Top