Tsarnaev Guilty of all 30 Counts in Marathon Bombings
By BU News Service Staff, CNN Newswire
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found guilty of all 30 counts in the bombing of the 2013 Boston Marathon. After deliberating for a little over 11 hours the jury of 5 men and 7 women found the defendant guilty of setting off two bombs along Boylston Street killing 3 people, including BU graduate student Lingzi Lu, injuring 260 spectators, and aiding and abetting in the shooting death of MIT police officer Sean Collier.
The defense brought four witnesses to the stand and argued that Tsarnaev was influenced by his older brother, Tamerlan, who was killed during a manhunt for the two in Watertown. The jury, however, was not convinced. They heard from 92 prosecution witnesses who recounted horrific details of the carnage that ensued in the wake of the explosions. At times the graphic testimony brought jurors to tears.
Tsarnaev stood with his head bowed and his hands clasped as the verdicts were read.
The trial now moves to the death penalty phase in which Tsarnaev could be sentenced to death or life in prison. Jurors will be asked to weigh aggravating factors such as the heinousness of his crimes against mitigating factors such as his family and mental health history, as well as his relative youth. Tsarnaev was 19 at the time of the bombing.
The family of the MIT police officer Sean Collier issued a statement after the verdict saying the siblings were terrorists who “monumentally failed” at striking fear in people. “While today’s verdict can never bring Sean back, we are thankful that Dzhokar Tsarnaev will be held accountable for the evil that he brought to so many families,” the Collier family said in a written statement. Collier was killed by the Tsarnaev brothers in the days after the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.
The U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, Carmen Ortiz, said Wednesday that her office is focused on the work for the sentencing phase of the Boston Marathon bombings trial. “We are gratified by the jury’s verdict and thank everyone who played a role in the trial for their hard work,” Oritz said, declining to comment further.
Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman said Wednesday’s guilty verdicts against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev “will never replace the lives that were lost and so dramatically changed, but it is a relief, and one step closer to closure.”
BU Law professor Karen Loor shares thoughts about the jury’s decision and what to expect in the death penalty phase of the trial. Taylor Walker reports.
List of all 30 counts
From the Archives:
Third Victim Grad Student at BU
BU Establishes Scholarship in Honor of Slain Student
Special Report – Triumph, Then Tragedy: The Boston Marathon Bombings