High security for Boston Marathon as bombing trial pauses

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(Reuters) - Tens of thousands of runners, including some of the world's best, and hundreds of thousands of fans are expected to hit the streets of Boston on Monday for the 119th running of the Boston Marathon.

Security will be high along the 26.2 mile course, in recognition of the bombing of the 2013 race, which killed three people and injured 264 in the one of the most visible attacks on U.S. soil since Sept. 11, 2001.

The race goes on during a pause in the trial of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 21-year-old ethnic Chechen who was convicted earlier this month of the bombing. His trial will move into a second phase beginning on Tuesday, with prosecutors arguing that he should be sentenced to death for his crimes.

Police urged spectators not to bring large bags or coolers, saying that such packages would be subject to search. They also banned the use of drones along the course.

"We have significant resources and personnel out there to protect our public," said Mayor Martin Walsh. "It won't change our atmosphere. The city will be the same positive environment that people are used to enjoying during the Boston Marathon."

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High security for Boston Marathon as bombing trial pauses
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Elite men leave the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. of the the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Bill Greene/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: Caroline Rotich of Kenya celebrates after winning the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopa celebrates after winning the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: (L-R) Caroline Rotich of Kenya, Mare Dibaba of Ethiopia, and Buzunesh Deba of Ethiopia run during the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: Caroline Rotich of Kenya celebrates after winning the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: Caroline Rotich of Kenya, left, and Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia race down Boylston Street during the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. Rotich won the marathon with a time of 2:24:55. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopa (L) and Caroline Rotich of Kenya celebrate after winning the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopa celebrates after winning the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Blaise Brennan, of Millersville, Maryland gets a souvenir photo at the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. before the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Lane Turner/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Elite women leave the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. of the the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Bill Greene/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Runners roam the Athlete's Village at the Athlete's Village at the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. before the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Lane Turner/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: A group from Wayzata, Minnesota takes a souvenir picture in the Athlete's Village at the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. before the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Lane Turner/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Race security personnel gather in the drizzle at the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. of the the 119th Boston Marathon. (Globe staff / Bill Greene)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 18: Police patrol the starting area in Boston Common before the B.A.A. 5k on April 18, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 18: Runners gather in Boston Common before the B.A.A. 5k on April 18, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 18: Police patrol the starting line before the B.A.A. 5k on April 18, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 18: Ben True of the United States wins the B.A.A. 5k on April 18, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON - APRIL 15: On the second anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings, survivors Jeff Bauman, left, and Patrick Downes, right, threw out ceremonial first pitches before the game. The Boston Red Sox hosted the Washington Nationals in an MLB regular season baseball game at Fenway Park. (Photo by Jim Davis/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Rich Vaillant, of Shrewsbury, gets a nap in under the tent in the Athlete's Village at the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. before the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Lane Turner/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: A banner hangs near the finish line before the start of the running of the 119th Boston Marathon on April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Information booth volunteers dance in place to Pharrell Williams' 'Happy' to stay warm, before the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. Left to right are Tom Regan, wife Judi Regan and Jen Brooks. The 119th Boston Marathon is run on Monday, April 20, 2015. (Photo by Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
WELLESLEY, MA - APRIL 20: Wellesley College student Maria Castano gets the scream tunnel ready. Getting ready for the the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
WELLESLEY, MA - APRIL 20: Ashley Wilson, 16, even with a torn ACL, is a volunteer spotter along the route. Getting ready for the the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 20: People have their bags checked at a checkpoint along Commonwealth Avenue as the Boston Marathon prepares to get underway April 20, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. This is the 119th running of the Boston Marathon. Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Men's wheelchair division leave the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. of the the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Bill Greene/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
HOPKINTON, MA - APRIL 20: Runners stay warm with foil blankets under a tent at the Athlete's Village at the starting line in Hopkinton, Mass. before the 119th Boston Marathon. (Photo by Lane Turner/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
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The field will include Meb Keflezighi of San Diego, who in 2014 became the first U.S. male to win the race in three decades, with a time of 2 hours, 8 minutes and 37 seconds, as well as top Kenya and Ethiopian contenders including Patrick Makau, Abel Kirui and Wilson Chebet.

The women's race will be wide open with three-time winner and reigning champion Rita Jeptoo of Kenya excluded from the race this year while she serves a two-year ban from the sport after failing a drug test.

Top women's contenders include Buzunesh Deba of Ethiopia, 2012 Boston winner Sharon Cherop of Kenya, as well as Shalane Flanagan, who originally hails from the Boston suburb of Marblehead, Massachusetts, who finished fourth in 2013.

In addition to attracting elite runners competing for the $830,500 in prize money, the world's oldest annual marathon is a mecca for dedicated amateurs who work for years to meet the strict, age-graded time cutoffs they must pass to earn a coveted spot in the field.

One group that will not be present at the race is the 12 jurors and six alternates in the Tsarnaev trial. U.S. District Judge George O'Toole ordered them to stay away from the race.

(Reporting by Scott Malone; editing by Andrew Hay)

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