CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — In a matter of hours, the scene around Augusta native Katie Rollins’ apartment changed from a hive of activity to a ghost town.

Rollins, daughter of Augusta City Councilor Dave Rollins, said she hadn’t slept since the earliest stages of the manhunt for the Boston Marathon bombing suspects unfolded within a mile of Rollins’ apartment in Cambridge’s Central Square neighborhood.

Rollins, 25, a 2005 graduate of Cony High School and a 2009 graduate of Harvard University, starred on the basketball court at each school. She and her roommate didn’t hear gunshots when the suspects allegedly killed the MIT officer, but soon dozens of police cars were driving past and helicopters hovered overhead.

Rollins watched the TV news, followed Twitter and listened to the police scanner via an app on her smartphone.

It wasn’t until well after midnight — when the suspects had fled to Watertown — that she realized that the two men shot the police officer and hijacked an SUV were allegedly connected to the bombings.

“For all we knew, these were two completely unrelated events that were causing mayhem,” she said.


Rollins said there are no cars or pedestrians on the normally busy streets outside her apartment, and she’s trying to work from home while also following the news.

The police presence diminished later in the afternoon, so Rollins and her roommate drove about an hour outside of Boston to a relative’s house to get out of their apartment and have something to eat.

They returned to Cambridge after law enforcement lifted the lockdown at about 6 p.m.

Rollins said she wasn’t sure she’d be able to sleep Friday night, either.

“You don’t want someone as evil as this to have such control over your emotions and your thoughts, but you can’t help but be haunted by the idea that this person is still around, and they’re around your backyard, your neighborhood,” she said.

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