Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 25th 2015 Contents B49
Thursday, June 25, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
BOSTON---In a startling turn,
Boston Marathon bomber
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev rose to his feet
and apologised to the victims and
their loved ones for the first time
yesterday, just before a judge for-
mally sentenced him to death.
"I am sorry for the lives that I ve
taken, for the suffering that I ve
caused you, for the damage that I ve
done---irreparable damage," the 21-
year-old college student said in his
Russian accent, breaking more than
two years of public silence.
To the victims, he said: "I pray
for your relief, for your healing."
After Tsarnaev said his piece, US
District Judge George O Toole Jr
Boston Marathon bombing survivors Erika Brannock, left, and Rebekah
Gregory leave the Moakley Federal Courthouse clutching each other following
the formal sentencing of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in Boston, yesterday. AP PHOTO
Death sentence for Boston Marathon bomber
quoted Shakespeare s line The evil that
men do lives after them. The good is
often interred with their bones.
"So it will be for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev,"
the judge said, telling Tsarnaev that no
one will remember that his teachers
were fond of him, that his friends found
him fun to be with or that he showed
compassion to disabled people.
"What will be remembered is that
you murdered and maimed innocent
people, and that you did it willfully
and intentionally. You did it on pur-
pose," O Toole said.
"I sentence you to the penalty of
death by execution," he said.
Tsarnaev looked down and rubbed
his hands together as the judge pro-
nounced his fate. The apology came
after Tsarnaev listened impassively for
about three hours as a procession of
victims and their loved ones lashed
out at him for his "cowardly" and "dis-
"He can t possibly have had a soul
to do such a horrible thing," said Karen
Rand McWatters, who lost a leg in the
attack and whose best friend, 29-year-
old Krystle Campbell, was killed.
The outcome of the proceedings was
never in doubt: The judge was required
under law to impose the jury s death
sentence for the April 15, 2013, attack
that killed three people and wounded
more than 260.
The only real suspense was whether
Tsarnaev would say anything when
given a chance to speak near the end
of the proceedings.
Until yesterday, he had said almost
nothing publicly since his arrest more
than two years ago, offering neither
remorse nor explanation.
During his trial, he showed a trace
of emotion only once, when he cried
while his Russian aunt was on the
stand. And the only evidence of any
remorse came from Sister Helen Pre-
jean, a prominent death penalty oppo-
nent, who quoted him as saying of the
victims: "No one deserves to suffer
like they did."
In condemning him to death, the
jury cited his lack of remorse as one
of many factors.
His apology was a five-minute
address peppered with religious ref-
erences and praise of Allah. He paused
several times, looking as if he was try-
ing to maintain his composure. He
stood and faced the judge while speak-
ing, but spoke of the victims.
Twenty-four people in all gave so-
called victim impact statements at the
sentencing, some of them urging him
to explain himself and utter the words
of remorse they longed to hear.
Tsarnaev will probably be sent to
the death row unit in the state of Indi-
ana. It could take years or even decades
for appeals to work their way through
In May, the jury condemned the
former college student to die for joining
his older brother, Tamerlan, in setting
off the two pressure-cooker bombs
near the finish line and in killing an
MIT police officer as they fled. Tamer-
lan, 26, was killed during the getaway.
A somber-looking Tsarnaev, wearing
a dark sport jacket with a collared shirt
and no tie, sat between his lawyers,
his chair turned toward the lectern
from which the victims spoke. He
picked at his beard and gazed down-
ward most of the time, only occasion-
ally looking at the victims.
Campbell s mother, Patricia Camp-
bell, was the first person to address
the court. She looked across the room
at Tsarnaev, seated about 20 feet away,
and spoke directly to him.
"What you did to my daughter is
disgusting. I don t know what to say
to you. I think the jury did the right
thing," she said.
Rebekah Gregory, a Texas woman
who lost a leg in the bombing, defiantly
told Tsarnaev she is not his victim.
"While your intention was to destroy
America, what you have really accom-
plished is actually quite the opposite---
you ve unified us," she said, staring
directly at Tsarnaev as he looked down.
"We are Boston strong, we are
America strong, and choosing to mess
with us was a terrible idea. So how s
that for your VICTIM impact state-
Several victims condemned Tsarnaev
for coming to the US as an immigrant
from Russia, enjoying the benefits of
living here and then attacking Amer-
ican citizens. (AP)
In this courtroom sketch, Boston
Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev
sits as survivors and victim's family
members address the court yesterday.
Tsarnaev apologised to the victims
and their loved ones for the first time
just before the judge formally
sentenced him to death. AP PHOTO
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