New York Post fingers two Boston "Bag Men"

The paper prints photos of two dark-skinned attendees -- whom it can't confirm are even suspects

Published April 18, 2013 3:00PM (EDT)

The New York Post's front page today is given over to a photo of two purported suspects in the bombings at the Boston Marathon.

One problem: They're not actually the suspects.

That's what CBS's John Miller stated this morning. CBS News was one of the outlets, unlike CNN, the AP and Fox News, that did not report an arrest during yesterday's flurry of misinformation; the Post, meanwhile, has been pilloried for its reporting in the immediate aftermath of the bombing, including its claim that 12 had died.

And the Post's article, coming as it does after a provocative front page that calls the pair "Bag Men" (common slang for a criminal), surprisingly comes short of actually calling the two men suspects. Those readers who choose to parse the Post's reporting on a crowded subway car will find that the men are in photos (one of a crowd scene) being purportedly circulated by authorities, but "two potential suspects" caught on video who've been fingered may or may not even be the same people.

"It was not immediately clear if the men in the law-enforcement photos are the same men in the surveillance videos."

The Post's story, then, is that two young and dark-skinned men are in some of the photos being distributed by the FBI (the Post does not provide any context as to whether any more photos are being circulated), and that two people who are or are not the same people are "potential suspects." That's before it moves on to aggregation of what is known about the bombings so far (including the correct number of fatalities) and listing recent evacuations.

As Deadspin and Gawker are reporting this morning, one of the two whose faces are still on the Post's website is a local high-school track runner who's been protesting his innocence on a Facebook post on which he's changed his name.

Update, 2:00p.m.: The Post's editor Col Allan says he stands by his story.

By Daniel D'Addario

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Boston Bombing Boston Explosions New York Post