Boston Bomb Hoax Suspect Calls Actions Performance Art

The mother of Kevin Edson says her son "has been battling mental issues for several years."
3:01 | 04/17/14

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Transcript for Boston Bomb Hoax Suspect Calls Actions Performance Art
Now, to the man accused of that bomb scare on the Boston marathon's finish line. This morning we're learning more about the suspect who is in custody. ABC's Ryan smith is live in Boston and has all of the details for us. Good morning, Ryan. Reporter: Good morning, robin. Kevin Edson was seen walking in the area you see behind me. Just feet away at the finish line, where tens of thousands will cross on Monday. While he sits facing multiple charges, his mom, claiming he had mental illness and speaking out on his behalf. Facing a judge Wednesday morning, 29-year-old Kevin Edson, stood silently. A far cry from the scene he made the night before. Edson, seen here wearing all-black and a veil. Following a ceremony at the finish line of the Boston marathon. Police say he told them he had a rice cooker in his backpack. As a precaution, the bag was blown up. On the one-year anniversary of the Boston marathon bombing. Reporter: Edson, covered in paint in his mug shot, is now facing six, separate charges, including threatening battery, and possession of a hoax explosive device. He has pleaded not guilty. Prosecutors say he told police, the whole thing was performance art. Allegedly saying, quote, I knew what I was doing, the performance got the best of me. His defense, arguing he had a history of psychiatric disorders and was off his medication. He does need some assistance to stabilize himself mentally. Reporter: Edson's mother telling ABC news, her son, quote, has been battling mental issues for several years. And, quote, to have this happen on the one-year anniversary of such a horrific crime, is unfathomable. What he did at the finish line is absurd and shameful. She went on to say, quote, I have two sons who struggle with mental illness. And I've had to constantly fight for 12 years to get them the help they need. She said she has run the marathon herself, six times. And had the this message for those running next week. Quote, run strong and enjoy the wonderful feeling as you cross that finish line. Meanwhile, marathon organizers say they are stepping up security for Monday's event. Police will number in the thousands. And 100 strategically policed video cameras are monitor security. This will be the safest place on the planet on April 21st. Reporter: With the race just four days away, a city is still on edge. And speaking of tighter security, you know those so-called bandit runners that typically run in races, like the Boston marathon. They're people who run without Numbers. Those people will not be allowed to run in the Boston marathon this year. If they do, they may be removed from the course. As for Kevin Edson, robin, he is due back in court may 7th. All right, Ryan. Still expecting a record number of runners on Monday.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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