Boston bomber Tsarnaev’s death sentence appeal to be heard by Supreme Court
The Supreme Court announced Monday that they will hear federal prosecutors’ appeal to reinstate the death sentence for Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
A federal appeals court vacated Tsarnaev’s sentence finding that the trial court judge had not properly asked all prospective jurors about the speficifc media coverage of the case they had seen or heard about the case prior to the trial.
“A core promise of our criminal-justice system is that even the very worst among us deserves to be fairly tried and lawfully punished — a point forcefully made by the then-U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts during a presser at the trial’s end,” the First Circuit Court of Appeals said in their ruling at the time.
The death sentence had originally been sought by the Obama administration, and the appeal was filed by the Trump administration. It remains to be seen what the Biden administration will do. During his campaign, he said he would work toward ending federal executions, although he did not indicate how.
Since taking office, Biden has not addressed the issue. The Justice Department did not immediately respond to Fox News’ question on the matter.
When asked about the administration’s position on Tsarnaev’s case during Monday’s briefing, White House press secretary Jen Psaki referred a reporter to the DOJ.
Tsarnaev’s lawyers acknowledged at the beginning of his trial that he and his older brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, set off the two bombs at the marathon finish line on April 15, 2013. But they argued that Dzhokar Tsarnaev is less culpable than his brother, who they said was the mastermind behind the attack.
If the Supreme Court does agree to lift Tsarnaev’s sentence, he would still likely remain imprisoned for the rest of his life, serving multiple life sentences.
Oral arguments in Tsarnaev’s case are expected to take place in the fall.