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Supreme Court Reinstates Death Penalty For Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Supreme Court Reinstates Death Penalty For Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Justice Thomas for the 6-3 Majority: “Dzhokhar Tsarnaev committed heinous crimes. The Sixth Amendment nonetheless guaranteed him a fair trial before an impartial jury. He received one.”

The Boston Marathon Bombing took place almost 9 years ago, on April 15, 2013. It seems like it was yesterday.

We covered it live at the time, Explosions at Boston Marathon finish line:

The media immediately blamed right wing extremists and homegrown terror, which was false, Add Boston Marathon Bombing to pile of Failed Eliminationist Narratives.

The suspects were two Chechen immigrant brothers, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

https://twitter.com/JasonOliveiraTV/status/325276332793683968

We also covered the aftermath, including the manhunt for the perpetrators which had Boston and surroundings on lockdown for days. Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed when Dzhokhar accidentally drove over him while trying to escape. Dzhokhar was captured alive, but not before they murdered a Somerville, MA, police officer, Sean Collier.

We also covered the trial of the surviving brother, his death sentence, and the overturning of the death sentence by the appeals court:

The Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit vacated the death penalty against Dzhokhar, ordering a new penalty phase trial. The Court also reversed the underlying convictions on several relatively-minor gun possession counts. It’s a long Opinion (pdf.).

Amy Howe at Scotusblog described the grounds on which the death sentence was overturned by the 1st Circuit, and the issues before the Supreme Court:

A jury convicted Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on all counts and sentenced him to death. But the 1st Circuit threw out his death sentences. It ruled that the trial judge should have asked all potential jurors what media coverage they had seen or heard about Tsarnaev’s case. It also held that the judge, during the sentencing phase of the trial, should not have excluded evidence that Tamerlan was involved in a separate, unsolved triple murder in 2011. Especially when Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s lawyers argued that he had been swayed by his brother to commit the crimes, the court of appeals said, the evidence of Tamerlan’s possible involvement in the 2011 triple murder was “highly probative of Tamerlan’s ability to influence his brother.”

The U.S. Supreme Court just reinstated the death penalty in a 6-3 decision by Justice Thomas, with Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan in dissent.

From Justice Thomas’ majority Opinion:

On April 15, 2013, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev planted and detonated two homemade pressure-cooker bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. The blasts hurled nails and metal debris into the assembled crowd, killing three while maiming and wounding hundreds. Three days later, the brothers murdered a campus police officer, carjacked a graduate student, and fired on police who had located them in the stolen vehicle. Dzhokhar attempted to flee in the vehicle but inadvertently killed Tamerlan by running him over. Dzhokhar was soon arrested and indicted. A jury found Dzhokhar guilty of 30 federal crimes and recommended the death penalty for 6 of them. The District Court accordingly sentenced Dzhokhar to death. The Court of Appeals vacated the death sentence. We now reverse.

* * *

The District Court did not abuse its broad discretion by declining to ask about the content and extent of each juror’s media consumption regarding the bombings. The court recognized the significant pretrial publicity concerning the bombings, and reasonably concluded that the proposed media-content question was “unfocused,” risked producing “unmanageable data,” and would at best shed light on “preconceptions” that other questions already probed. App. 480–481. At voir dire, the court further explained that it did not want to be “too tied to a script” because “[e]very juror is different” and had to be “questioned in a way that [was] appropriate” to the juror’s earlier answers. Id., at 498. The court was concerned that a media-content question had “the wrong emphasis,” focusing on what a juror knew before coming to court, rather than on potential bias. Id., at 502. Based on “years” of trial experience, the court concluded that jurors who came in with some prior knowledge would still be able to act impartially and “hold the government to its proof.” Id., at 502–503. The District Court’s decision was reasonable and well within its discretion, as our precedents make clear. See Mu’Min, 500 U. S., at 427.

* * *

The Court of Appeals’ second reason for vacating Dzhokhar’s capital sentences—that the District Court erred in excluding from the sentencing proceedings evidence of the Waltham murders—fares no better….

Here, during sentencing, Dzhokhar sought to introduce evidence linking Tamerlan to the unsolved Waltham murders. He argued that the evidence supported his mitigation defense that Tamerlan was the ringleader. The District Court acknowledged Dzhokhar’s rationale but excluded the evidence because it was “without any probative value” and “would be confusing to the jury.” App. 650. See 18 U. S. C. §3593(c).

That conclusion was reasonable and not an abuse of the District Court’s discretion. Dzhokhar sought to divert the sentencing jury’s attention to a triple homicide that Tamerlan allegedly committed years prior, though there was no allegation that Dzhokhar had any role in that crime. Nor was there any way to confirm or verify the relevant facts, since all of the parties involved were dead….

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev committed heinous crimes. The Sixth Amendment nonetheless guaranteed him a fair trial before an impartial jury. He received one. The judgment of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit is reversed.

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Comments

Gee, that’s a shame. Maybe we can get a two-for-one deal on the lethal injection chemicals, if we throw in Fauci in with this piece of garbage.

Btw: Never forget Rolling Stone Magazine’s glorification of this mass-murdering terrorist:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/rolling-stone-defends-cover-featuring-boston-marathon-bombing-suspect/

Maybe Kamala Harris will get him out on bail.

    The FBI is overjoyed you decided to do some faux toughness on the internet by providing them with a BS claim of a death threat to Anthony Fauci. What did you accomplish with that besides making all of us look crazy? I like providing LI articles to people who are not as far to the right as I am, there is no hide comments function so….thanks for making us all look insane.

    Enjoy your fake tough guy act, nobody is impressed by threats towards major public figures (except the FBI who love it because it gives them justifications).

      Sally MJ in reply to Danny. | March 10, 2022 at 12:39 pm

      If by:

      “The FBI is overjoyed you decided to do some faux toughness on the internet by providing them with a BS claim of a death threat to Anthony Fauci. What did you accomplish with that besides making all of us look crazy? ”

      …you mean sarcasm.

Hmmm, who is going to be more upset by this? Michael Bloomberg or Shannon Watts?

Let’s just do it, tired of paying for his room and board and the sick little girls who write love letters to this monster

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to gonzotx. | March 4, 2022 at 9:35 pm

    He will die of old age. The sentence will never be carried out.

      Hang the Joker, I mean Dzhokar.

      I don’t believe that is true.

      Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was sentenced in Federal court. There were 13 Federal executions in 2020 and 2021 alone. I have no doubt that that he will be executed.

        txvet2 in reply to CalFed. | March 4, 2022 at 11:14 pm

        I hope you’re right, but I have no confidence that a death sentence will be carried out while a Democrat has the whip hand.

        TargaGTS in reply to CalFed. | March 5, 2022 at 9:58 am

        Keep in mind that Garland stopped all federal executions last September ‘pending review.’ As far as I know, there has been no announcement on the scope or LENGTH of that review. I think the safe presumption is so long as Biden is president, there will be no federal executions.

          Danny in reply to TargaGTS. | March 5, 2022 at 11:41 pm

          Luckily death row is an extremely long process so 4 years of Biden won’t be long enough for an impact on this case.

          If we nominate Trump however 8 years might.

        Lucifer Morningstar in reply to CalFed. | March 5, 2022 at 10:41 am

        Oh please, his legal representatives will find every reason under the sun to appeal, appeal, and appeal the death sentence. And will string it out for years on end. And even if they don’t the reality is that the pharmaceutical companies will no longer deal with federal officials (or state officials for that matter) and will refuse to sell the drugs used in the idiotic “three-drug protocol” execution method that is currently the execution method used at the state & federal levels.

      For some perspective and context with respect to where we are toeay, in 1901 Leon Czolgosz shot President McKinley and was immediately apprehended by civilians in the crowd. Roughly a week after being shot, McKinley succumbed to sepsis from the wound and died on September 14.

      How many years did Czolgosz sit in prison awaiting his execution? Not years…not even months. On October 29, 1901 – barely SIX WEEKS after McKinley’s death – Czolgosz was strapped to an electric chair and sent to the great beyond.

      Oh how times have changed.

George_Kaplan | March 4, 2022 at 9:46 pm

What was the basis of Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan’s dissent? Are they simply anti-death penalty?

    No they are anti-common sense

    Milhouse in reply to George_Kaplan. | March 6, 2022 at 12:15 am

    Maybe they simply agree with the first circuit that had jury been told before sentencing about how bad and scary the older brother was, they might have given more credence to his claim that his brother made him do it, and therefore might have voted against executing him.

    James B. Shearer in reply to George_Kaplan. | March 7, 2022 at 2:38 am

    “What was the basis of Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan’s dissent? ..”

    Breyer wrote the dissent. I have not read it but reportedly it argued that the defense should be allowed to offer just about anything it wants as mitigating evidence in the penalty phase and did not address whether the questioning of potential jurors was adequate.

AF_Chief_Master_Sgt | March 4, 2022 at 9:49 pm

Forget the lethal injection. Forget a firing squad.

Put him in an 8 x 8 room with a pressure cooker full of nails and whatever else this evil piece of shit used against his victims.

Set an alarm clock to go off at random intervals. Short and long periods of time.

Eventually, after about 3 days of no food, no sleep, no water… perhaps the pressure cooker will explode.

The results will be similar to what he did to that young child.

Then he can spend eternity in his own hell.

Come to think of it, perhaps we need to follow the same process for looters and other criminals like they do in Ukraine.

We can rid the US of all kinds of human garbage.

If the Democrats want to do away with the Constitution, let’s do it. The first thing that goes away is the prohibition on using cruel and unusual punishment.

Let’s play the fucking game the same way the liberals want to play.

His sentence was overturned because the jury did NOT get to hear he was part of a triple murder?

What better way to demonstrate to the jury hoe DOESNT deserve death – is that what they were thinking?

Sure, blame it on the speed-bump he called brother.

For those who doubt he will be executed – going to have to disagree with you. If it doesn’t happen before the end of Harris’s term as President, the sentence will be carried out before Trump finishes his next term.

    daniel_ream in reply to Doc-Wahala. | March 5, 2022 at 2:42 am

    His sentence was overturned because the jury did NOT get to hear he was part of a triple murder?

    No, Tamerlan may have been involved in a triple murder. The argument, thin as it is, is that Tamerlan’s alleged involvement in the triple murder would have lent credence to the defense’s argument that Tamerlan was the ringleader and Dzhokar went along with the plot because he was afraid of Tamerlan.

      Just asking. Is “just going along with the plot” a valid defense at all? Dzhokar was an adult who fully understood that the objective of his brother’s scheme was to kill as many innocent people as possible. He was old enough to be held responsible for his own decisions and could have refused to go along but lacked the moral compass to do so. He also aided and abetted the murder of a cop during the escape which he clearly participated in. He could have surrendered himself to the cops instead of hiding when he was the only one left.

      Also, the Russians had warned the FBI since their arrival to the US that they were terrorists which the FBI dismissed that warning. Funny how often that happens.

        AF_Chief_Master_Sgt in reply to Pasadena Phil. | March 5, 2022 at 9:26 am

        “Funny how often that happens.”

        I don’t think that is odd at all. The Gestapo FBI dismisses all kinds of corruption and illegality except when it involves fabricated plots against nutjob governors, Presidents whom they don’t like, and citizens invited into the Capitol by Capitol Police on January 6.

        henrybowman in reply to Pasadena Phil. | March 5, 2022 at 4:12 pm

        “Just asking. Is “just going along with the plot” a valid defense at all?”
        Lots of other people get convicted of “felony murder.” Why should this mook be special?

        daniel_ream in reply to Pasadena Phil. | March 5, 2022 at 7:39 pm

        Just asking. Is “just going along with the plot” a valid defense at all?

        Anything is a valid defense. How likely it is to work is another matter. No one is disputing Dzhokar committed the crimes; the relevance of Tamerlan’s triple murder involvement is whether Dzhokar should get the death penalty if he was at least somewhat coerced.

        Milhouse in reply to Pasadena Phil. | March 5, 2022 at 9:34 pm

        Just asking. Is “just going along with the plot” a valid defense at all?

        It was offered as a mitigating factor at sentencing. It is valid for that purpose.

          Y2K in reply to Milhouse. | March 10, 2022 at 2:27 pm

          Kamala:

          Boston is a large city in Massachusetts.

          It has many people.

          The brothers killed some of the people but there are still many more so the death penalty is wrong.

          Y2K in reply to Milhouse. | March 10, 2022 at 8:35 pm

          My response was to another comment.

          I have no idea how it posted here

      TargaGTS in reply to daniel_ream. | March 5, 2022 at 10:02 am

      That defense wasn’t very effective for the Lincoln conspirators. Five – David Herold, Lewis Powell, George Atzerodt, and Mary Surratt – were hanged until dead and the other three or four, most famously including Samuel Mudd – received life sentences.

      An interesting side note, all off those trials were done by military commission.

And the police/stormtroopers went house to house removing, without warrants or probable cause, citizens from their property at gunpoint while crowds cheered.

Don’t ever forget that this POS received at least one stimulus check.

I wouldn’t mind if he received One big stimulating jolt of electricity.

Spare the bomb, abort the terrorist. Planned Terrorhood is a humane and progressive Choice.

Ramos Washington | March 6, 2022 at 7:53 am

There was great disappointment when it turned out the bombers were quite literally Caucasian.

Muslim Terrorist attack.

Islam was the sole motivating factor.

Even here, on this site, you completely censor out the most newsworthy fact.

Context is important here

In a 9-0 decision Supreme Court sided with an FBI illegal spying campaign against Muslims on grounds that the FBI claimed the usual “sources and methods, national security interest” lies.

A Supreme Court that will be rubber stamping any act by law enforcement is bad news. In case you forgot law enforcement thinks a parent who objects to CRT and radical gender theory/transgenderism is a terrorist. It is actively on the side of radicals in school boards.

It ARRESTED a man for being angry that his daughter was raped and that the school district covered it up.

Rulings in favor of law enforcement shouldn’t be celebrated they should cause fear. “Back the Blue” is not reciprocated by cops. Most are good cops but as an institution could you imagine if any of the police brutality against conservatives routinely caught on tape and defended by law enforcement was against democrats?.

Imagine if the events Lauren Chen talks about below was done against BLM protestors.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f18ZXQTS06g

MissAmiaSays | March 10, 2022 at 3:40 pm

I can’t believe it’s been 9 years..

MissAmiaSays | March 10, 2022 at 3:46 pm

The District Court did not abuse its broad discretion by declining to ask about the content and extent of each juror’s media consumption regarding the bombings

Smh
Really,?
Unless a juror lived under a rock, of course they knew or heard esp if they lived in Boston or surrounding area. Nevermind.

I am only for the death penalty for the worst of the worst type cases and this case is one of the worst of the worst: Good they reversed it back,

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