Retail Cameras Helped Hunt for Boston Marathon Bombers

Morning Business Memo:

Retailers' surveillance cameras might have been a big help to police as they searched this week for the Boston Marathon bombers. If they helped crack the case, it would only be the latest example of retail cameras helping to solve crimes outside store buildings.

Video from Lord & Taylor cameras was among footage viewed by investigators in Boston. The FBI released images Thursday from one camera, zeroing in on two men in caps who have become the suspects in the case. Joseph LaRocca, a retail security expert, told USA TODAY that large retailers in urban areas typically have closed-circuit TV cameras that pan and tilt to capture activities outside the stores.

The 2011 shooting of former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Ariz., outside a Safeway supermarket was captured on the store's video cameras. David Anta of New York-based I Video Corp. says video surveillance can be set up to trigger warnings if bags are left unattended or suspicious activity takes place before or during a large-scale event. An executive at The National Retail Federation says surveillance cameras can record as far as half a mile away.

Published reports say Boeing's grounded 787 jetliners could soon be flying again. The FAA might be set to approve Boeing's fix for the ion-lithium batteries. The 787 Dreamliner has been grounded since mid-January because of smoldering batteries that in one case caused a serious fire. The Wall Street Journal says the FAA is expected to announce today that Boeing's redesigned batteries are safe. The fix includes more heat insulation and a battery box designed to vent any hot gases from the batteries outside the planes. There was no immediate comment from the FAA and a Boeing spokesman declined to comment on the report.

This week has been a roller coaster ride for the stock market. The Dow Jones index, S&P 500 and Nasdaq Thursday suffered their third loss this week. The Dow closed down 81 points. Futures this morning suggest gains for stocks when the market opens.

One less bidder for Dell? The Wall Street Journal reports Blackstone - the private investment firm - has pulled back from its plans to submit an offer for the computer company. Blackstone made a preliminary proposal late last month as an alternate to Dell's agreement to sell itself to CEO Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners for $24.4 billion. That worked out to $13.65 per share, a price some Dell stockholders viewed as too low.

Richard Davies Business Correspondent ABC News Radio Twitter: daviesabc

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