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US House members, police meet over bombing inquiry

Police Commissioner Edward Davis, Richard DesLauriers of the FBI, Representative Michael McCaul of Texas, and William Keating were on Boylston Street in Boston Friday.

David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

Police Commissioner Edward Davis, Richard DesLauriers of the FBI, Representative Michael McCaul of Texas, and William Keating were on Boylston Street in Boston Friday.

US Representative William R. Keating and the chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security met with law enforcement officials in Boston and Watertown Friday to discuss the panel’s ongoing investigation of the Boston Marathon bombings.

Keating, a Bourne Democrat who sits on the committee, said he and Texas Republican Michael McCaul spent the day with officials from the FBI, State Police, and Boston and Watertown police, among other agencies.

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Keating declined to discuss the meetings in detail but said, “We got some very good, practical ideas on ways to better share information and ways to maybe use resources better” to prevent future attacks.

Watertown Police Chief Edward Deveau said in an e-mail that the congressmen and other officials had “a private view of what occurred in Watertown.”

“They left impressed with the actions of my officers and how they handled the first attack on US police officers with both explosives and firearms.”

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Deveau was referring to a confrontation days after the attack between officers and the alleged bombers in Watertown, where Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev allegedly threw explosives and shot at police.

The FBI came under scrutiny after the April 15 bombings, which killed three people and wounded more than 260, when the Globe and other news outlets reported that agents were tipped off by Russian authorities in 2011 about their concerns over Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, of Cambridge, was killed in the confrontation in Watertown.

The FBI was also criticized after Boston Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis told Congress last month that federal agents had not informed local officials about their 2011 investigation of Tsarnaev.

Keating said Friday that the Homeland Security Committee will produce a report on its findings, but that there is no timetable for when it will be completed.

The committee held a hearing on the bombings in May, and more are expected.

“I anticipate having more than one additional hearing before this is over,” said Keating, who also traveled to Russia last month to meet with officials there. “It’s something we’re doing methodically.”

State and Boston police declined to comment Friday, and a spokesman for McCaul said the congressman was not available for an interview. A spokeswoman for the FBI said the agency had no details to provide.

“We’ve got a lot more work to do, and we want to do this thoroughly,” Keating said. “Because what we learn here might save lives in another city and another time.”

Travis Andersen can be reached at tandersen@
globe.com or
on Twitter @TAGlobe.
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