Chaffetz not convinced Boston bombers acted alone
Published: April 26, 2013 10:01PM
Updated: April 26, 2013 10:16PM
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Leah Hogsten | Tribune file photo Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah.

Washington • Rep. Jason Chaffetz isn’t convinced the Boston Marathon bombing is an isolated case involving Muslims who were “self-radicalized,” as law enforcement officials have said.

And the GOP congressman from Utah urged investigators to delve into how the suspects developed the plan and obtained the weapons.

“I don’t think it is necessarily just two kids who watched some YouTube videos and went awry and decided to do this mayhem,” Chaffetz said on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” on Friday. “I worry that they were radicalized in a way that others may have been radicalized. That is where we need investigators to really be spending some time.”

Chaffetz, a member of the Homeland Security Committee, used the term “punks” to describe the two suspects — Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who is dead, and his younger brother Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who is in a prison hospital.

He also promised detailed congressional hearings into the bombing and potential gaps in homeland security procedures, but said that those hearings shouldn’t take place for months, giving investigators a chance to focus on the case, which has resulted in the deaths of four people and injury to more than 250.

Investigators have said that the suspects do not appear to be part of a terrorist organization and the living suspect has said they were motivated by the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Tamerlan Tsarnaev did travel to Russia, but investigators have told reporters that they have found no evidence that he received guidance leading to bombings.

mcanham@sltrib.com