Court overturns Boston bomber death sentence
Despite the death sentence being overturned, the ruling won't result in Tsarnaev being released.
On Friday, the First Circuit Court of Appeals threw out the death sentence and ordered a new trial in the case of 27-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
In 2013, Tsarnaev and his older brother placed two bombs near the Boston Marathon’s finish line. He was later convicted for the crime while his brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, died after exchanging gunfire with police during the aftermath of the bombing.
The appeals court found that a lower court judge did not properly vet the jurors who recommended the death sentence for Tsarnaev. Despite the death sentence being overturned, the ruling won’t result in Tsarnaev being released.
On Friday, Tsarnaev’s legal team expressed appreciation for the Court’s fair decision. They stated: “If the government wishes to put someone to death, it must make its case to a fairly selected jury that is provided all relevant information.”
“The court rightly acknowledges, as do we, the extraordinary harm done to the victims of the bombing. It is now up to the government to determine whether to put the victims and Boston through a second trial, or to allow closure to this terrible tragedy by permitting a sentence of life without the possibility of release,” they continued.
Carmen M. Ortiz, the U.S. attorney whose office prosecuted Tsarnaev called the ruling “unfortunate and disappointing.”
Ortiz, who is now in private practice, expressed during a telephone interview with The Washington Post that the worst part of the court’s ruling was the pain and suffering that victims, their families, and survivors would have to endure. “My heart goes out to them,” she added.
In recent years, federal executions have become uncommon, but the practice has increased lately. According to Vox, three executions have already taken place in July 2020, and four more are scheduled for August and September.
At the conclusion of Tsarnaev’s next trial, it will be determined whether his name will be included in the list of federal executions.
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