Boston Marathon Hoax Draws Reaction In New Rochelle

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Mount Vernon resident Chuck Keyes said he hopes the Boston Marathon can be reason to celebrate.
Mount Vernon resident Chuck Keyes said he hopes the Boston Marathon can be reason to celebrate. Photo Credit: Zak Failla

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. – One year after the Boston Marathon was interrupted by a terrorist bombing at the finish line, Westchester County residents could do little more than shake their heads in disgust after a man was arrested for carrying a hoax rice cooker on the anniversary of the bombing.

Kevin Edson, 25, was stopped and arrested by police on Tuesday, where he was found carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker one year to the day that Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev detonated two pressure cooker bombs at the finish line of the marathon, killing three and injuring nearly 300 more.

The Wakefield native caught the attention of police while he was walking barefoot in the middle of the marathon route – which was open to pedestrians at the time – dressed completely in black with face paint in pouring rain.

Edson was charged with threatening battery, possession of a hoax explosive device, threats to commit a crime. He was held on $100,000 bail and was submitted for psychiatric testing.

“Clearly the guy isn’t all there, but to do that, on that day, it’s just wrong, man,” Mount Vernon resident Chuck Keyes said in New Rochelle on Thursday. “They should be getting ready to celebrate, and to move on with this year’s race, and instead they’re dealing with that.”

New Rochelle resident Eric Hess likened the situation to someone demonstratively supporting Al Qaeda in the streets of New York following the September 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

“There are some lines that you don’t cross, and that guy crossed one of them,” he said. “It’s disrespectful to the city, to the people there, and most importantly to the families that suffered last year.”

With Edson in custody, the city will continue gearing up to host the 117th Boston Marathon on Monday. Mount Vernon resident Elsie Smith, who has a friend running the race, said she simply hopes the event goes off without a hitch.

“I try not to think too much about the past in cases like this, you just want this year’s to run smoothly,” she said. “I’m sure they will have security at every corner, just want it to be a day of celebration not sadness.”

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