Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev charged
Dzhokhar Anzorovich Tsarnaev, 19, of Cambridge was charged today with one count of using a weapon of mass destruction – namely, a pressure cooker bomb – in the Boston Marathon bombings that killed 3 people and injured more than 200 others a week ago.
“Although our investigation is ongoing, today’s charges bring a successful end to a tragic week for the city of Boston, and for our country,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “Our thoughts and prayers remain with each of the bombing victims and brave law enforcement professionals who lost their lives or suffered serious injuries as a result of this week’s senseless violence…We will hold those who are responsible for these heinous acts accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
Tsarnaev, a naturalized U.S. citizen, could face the death penalty if he is convicted of the weapons of mass destruction charge.
Tsarnaev, who was captured on Friday after an intense 24-hour manhunt in Watertown, remains in serious condition after being treated for gunshot wounds to head, neck, leg, and hand at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
Tsarnaev was arraigned in the hospital before U.S. District Court Judge Marianne B. Bowler. “Court is satisfied that the defendant is alert and able to respond to the charges. Defendant is remanded from the custody of the FBI agents to the U.S. Marshals,” according to notes from the court proceeding. A probable cause hearing is scheduled for May 30, 2013.
Tsarnaev will be represented by the Federal Public Defender Office. Miriam Conrad, Federal Public Defender for Massachusetts, filed a request asking the court to appoint two attorneys with experience in death penalty cases to defend Tsarnaev “given the magnitude of this case.”
The Justice Department on Friday revoked Tsarnaev’s Miranda rights, invoking the “public safety exemption”.
“There is a public safety exemption in cases of national security and potential charges involving acts of terrorism, and so government has that opportunity right now,” said Carmen Ortiz, U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, shortly after Tsarnaev’s capture on Friday night.
The “public safety exemption” would permit law enforcement to “engage in a limited and focused unwarned interrogation and allows the government to introduce the statement as direct evidence” in cases where the suspect could pose an imminent danger to the safety of the public or police.
On Monday, Ortiz declined to comment on “any possible communications between the suspect and law enforcement at this time” but said that investigators are seeking to “elicit all actionable intelligence and information we can from terrorist suspects taken into our custody”.
Tsarnaev is also suspected of killing MIT police officer Sean Collier and seriously wounding MBTA police officer Richard H. Donohue during a car chase and fierce gun battle with police in Watertown. The charges for those crimes have yet to be filed.
- Justice.gov: Suspect in Boston Marathon Attack Charged with Using a Weapon of Mass Destruction
- Justice.gov: Criminal complaint United States v. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev filed on April 21, 2013 (PDF)
- FBI.gov: FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin: The “Public Safety” Exception to Miranda
- WhatTheFolly.com: Boston Marathon bombing
- WhatTheFolly.com: Boston Marathon bombing suspect captured alive after leaving a trail of bloodshed in Cambridge, Watertown
- WhatTheFolly.com: Massive manhunt underway in Watertown for Boston Marathon bombing suspect #2
- President Barack Obama’s statement on capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- Press conference Q&A on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect in Watertown – April 19, 2013
- FBI Special Agent Rick DesLauriers’s remarks on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- MA State Police Superintendent Timothy Alben’s remarks on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- MA Gov. Deval Patrick’s remarks on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- Boston Mayor Tom Menino’s remarks on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- Boston Police Commission Ed Davis’s remarks on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- MBTA Police Chief Paul MacMillan’s statement on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- ATF Special Agent Joseph Anarumo’s statement on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- US Attorney Carmen Ortiz on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- Suffolk County DA Dan Conley’s statement on the capture of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect
- Remarks by Ruslan Tsarni, uncle of the two Boston Marathon bombing suspects – April 19, 2013
- Remarks by Alvi Tsarni, uncle of the two Boston Marathon bombing suspects – April 19, 2013