TODAY   |  April 19, 2013

Police, helicopters circle Mass. neighborhood

NBC’s Kerry Sanders reports from Watertown, Mass., where authorities are gathering on the ground and circling by helicopter.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> reporter: little bit of gunpowder. the helicopter is circling over here. i know the area that they've been in because i've been over there earlier today in the darkness before the sun came up and then officers asked us to step back. it's about a half mile walk right back that direction in a neighborhood where in that street they have found several devices. they didn't call them bombs but several devices. they placed an armored vehicle alongside it as a blast shield and they were working in backyard coming up the street inch by inch looking in the darkness and resuming in the day. i got to say in daylight when they brought in the military, i saw the military going in as others were going out and mostly military police . they were humvees going back in there and so at this point we have just seen a rush. we can't tell you much more than something going on. they are moving in on something.

>> as you're talking we can hear you a bit and we hear the voice of what appears to be an officer asking someone to leave. it appears that you are very near a live situation unfolding right now. i think pete williams is still with us. let's stay on this picture if we could. pete, if you can hear me, i think before we got to kerry, i thought i heard you say that officials now think they know where the second suspect dzhokar tsarnaev is. did i hear that in error?

>> my understanding for the last couple hours is they believe they know where the surviving brother of the two marathon bombers, where he is, that he's in a location maybe with others and that they have been fairly confident. they can't be positive that they know where he is. that has led to the question of if that's the case, why all of this extraordinary -- that's in watertown. why all of this extraordinary concern for boston? and that's when we were told by several law enforcement officials that they were convinced that or concerned that there was another person who had been making threats, perhaps a relative of the two brothers whom they haven't been able to nail down and so it's a complex interlocking situation here.

>> complex is the word. pete, in total transparency we're watching an image in watertown, massachusetts. we're watching pictures and we don't know the significance of them. we obviously just saw some law enforcement officials dressed in what appeared to be s.w.a.t. type wear running toward a location. kerry sanders , are you still with me? can you narrate a little bit and also give us a sense of what this position is in relation to where that gunfight took place over the night.

>> reporter: okay. i'm actually being told to leave. we're going to leave camera here and i'm going to walk off on microphone. what's that, sir?

>> you can stay just move back a little bit.

>> reporter: we'll leave the camera there with the shot up as i walk away . to give you an idea of where i am, i'm by the u.s. army materials technology laboratory. as you can see there's some more officers coming in there. this is up about four or five blocks then to the right you go right into the neighborhood where they've been concentrating all of their efforts overnight that i saw. this is a huge area. where i saw them they were concentrating their efforts there and they actually were holed up for a very long time at the intersection where the shooting took place. you know the young man that we had on the phone earlier who was narrating and sort of showing us what he had seen out his window, i was about a quarter of a block around the corner from where he was and we were actually trying to make our way over there to talk to him about what he had seen when he came upon the officers working that area with two devices there telling all of the residents to stay in their homes. many residents were inside their homes watching television and then looking out the window. then the officer said to us, okay, i need you all to leave because you are in danger. suggesting to us of course that the suspect was right there. we pulled back about a half block and moved back another half block and they pushed us a you will of all of the way down. one of the officers actually came up to me and my hands were in my pocket and he said who are you? he pulled a weapon on me. we're just reporter here. we're covering this. so very high anxiety . then it sort of dropped back down again. now we've seen the number of humvees with the u.s. military coming in there and now we've seen the state police come in there. we've seen the atf here working about three blocks off to the right of the picture that we're looking at and then we've had sort of the state police as a field force moving off to the left. if i were to do a guess of a count here, i'm going to estimate that in this area there could easily be as many as 200 police officers and members of the military working on what is like a tiny little three street area at this point.

>> we ask you to stand by as long as it is safe for you and your crew to do so.

>> reporter: we've actually moved back. we've moved back and we'll leave the camera up with the picture. there's no cameraman there.

>> kerry sanders is there. he's taking care of his own safety and that of our