Bomber shows no remorse for deadly carnage at city marathon
A jury sentenced Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to death yesterday for the Boston Marathon bombing, sweeping aside pleas that he was just a "kid" who fell under the influence of his fanatical older brother.
Tsarnaev (21) stood with his hands folded, his head slightly bowed, upon learning his fate, decided after 14 hours of deliberations over three days.
The decision sets the stage for what could be the nation's first execution of a terrorist in the post-9/11 era, though the case is likely to go through years of appeals. The execution would be carried out by lethal injection.
The 12-member federal grand jury had to be unanimous for Tsarnaev to get the death penalty. Otherwise, he would have automatically received a sentence of life in prison without parole.
Bombing victim Sydney Corcoran, who nearly bled to death and whose mother lost both legs, said: "My mother and I think that now he will go away and we will be able to move on. Justice. In his own words, 'an eye for an eye'."
In a statement, US Attorney General Loretta Lynch called the bombing a "cowardly attack" and added: "The ultimate penalty is a fitting punishment for this horrific crime, and we hope that the completion of this prosecution will bring some measure of closure to the victims and their families."
Three people were killed and more than 260 wounded when two pressure-cooker bombs packed with shrapnel exploded near the finish line on April 15, 2013.
The former college student was convicted last month of all 30 federal charges against him, including use of a weapon of mass destruction and the killing of a police officer during the Tsarnaev brothers' getaway attempt. Seventeen of those charges carried the possibility of the death penalty.
Tsarnaev's lawyer admitted at the very start of the trial that he participated in the bombings, bluntly telling the jury: "It was him."
But the defence argued that Dzhokhar was led astray by his volatile and domineering 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan, who was portrayed as the mastermind of the plot to punish the US for its wars in Muslim countries.
Prosecutors depicted Dzhok-har as an equal partner in the attack, saying he was so cold-hearted he planted a bomb on the pavement behind a group of children, killing an eight-year-old boy.
Tamerlan died days after the bombing when he was shot by police and run over by Dzhokhar during a chaotic getaway attempt.
Tsarnaev did not take the stand at his trial, and he slouched in his seat through most of the case, a seemingly bored look on his face.
The sentence will be formally imposed at a later hearing in which bombing victims - and Tsarnaev - will be allowed to speak.
The Tsarnaevs - ethnic Chechens - lived in the former Soviet republic of Kyrgyzstan before moving to the US about a decade before the bombings.