Boston suspect remains hospitalised

2013-04-21 08:15

Boston - The surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing remains hospitalised in serious condition under heavy guard - apparently in no shape to be interrogated - as investigators try to establish the motive for the deadly attack and the scope of the plot.

People across the Boston area breathed easier the morning after Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, was pulled, wounded and bloody, from a tarp-covered boat in a Watertown backyard. The capture came at the end of a tense day that began with his 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan, dying in a gunbattle with police.

There was no word late on Saturday on when Tsarnaev might be charged and what those charges would be. The twin bombings on Monday killed three people, including a Chinese student, and wounded more than 180.

The most serious charge available to federal prosecutors would be the use of a weapon of mass destruction to kill people, which carries a possible death sentence. Massachusetts does not have the death penalty.

Unanswered questions

President Barack Obama said there are many unanswered questions about the bombing, including whether the Tsarnaev brothers - ethnic Chechens from southern Russia who had been in the US for about a decade and lived in the Boston area - had help from others. The president urged people not to rush to judgement about their motivations.

US officials said an elite interrogation team would question the Massachusetts college student without first advising him of his right to remain silent and the right to an attorney. This exception to issuing the warning known as the Miranda rule typically given to criminal suspects is allowed on a limited basis when the public may be in immediate danger, such as instances in which bombs are planted and ready to go off.

The American Civil Liberties Union expressed concern about invoking the exception. Executive Director Anthony Romero said the exception applies only when there is a continued threat to public safety and is "not an open-ended exception" to the Miranda rule.

The federal public defender's office in Massachusetts said it has agreed to represent Tsarnaev once he is charged. Miriam Conrad, public defender for Massachusetts, said he should have a lawyer appointed as soon as possible because there are "serious issues regarding possible interrogation".

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick said on Saturday afternoon that Tsarnaev was in serious but stable condition and was probably unable to communicate. Tsarnaev was at Boston's Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre, where 11 victims of the bombing were still being treated.

"I, and I think all of the law enforcement officials, are hoping for a host of reasons the suspect survives," Patrick said after ceremony before Saturday's baseball game at Fenway Park to honour the victims and survivors of the attack. "We have a million questions, and those questions need to be answered."

Dramatic manhunt

The all-day manhunt on Friday brought the Boston area to a near standstill and put people on edge across the metropolitan area.

The break came around nightfall when a homeowner in Watertown saw blood on his boat, pulled back the tarp and saw a bloody Dzhokhar Tsarnaev hiding inside, police said. After an exchange of gunfire, police negotiated his surrender and he was seized and taken away in an ambulance.

Raucous celebrations erupted in and around Boston, with chants of "USA! USA!" Residents flooded the streets in relief four days after the two pressure-cooker bombs packed with nails and other shrapnel went off.

"Tonight, our family applauds the entire law enforcement community for a job well done, and trust that our justice system will now do its job," said the family of 8-year-old Martin Richard, who died in the bombing. Also killed in the attack was Lu Lingzi, a 23-year-old student from China, and Krystle Campbell, a 29-year-old restaurant worker.

The bloody endgame came just a day after the FBI released surveillance-camera images of two young men in baseball caps suspected of planting the explosives at the Boston Marathon finish line.

Queries cascaded in after authorities released the photos - the FBI website was overwhelmed with 300 000 hits per minute - but what role those played in the overnight clash was unclear. State police spokesperson Dave Procopio said police realised they were dealing with the bombing suspects based on what the two men told a carjacking victim during their night of crime.

During the long night of violence leading up to the capture, the Tsarnaev brothers carjacked a man in a Mercedes-Benz and released him unharmed, killed a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer, severely wounded another lawman and took part in a furious gun battle and car chase in which they hurled two hand grenades at police from a large homemade arsenal, authorities said.

Watertown Police Chief Edward Deveau said Tamerlan Tsarnaev ran out of ammunition and police tackled him, before Dzhokhar Tsarnaev drove the carjacking victim's Mercedes towards them. Police dived out of the way and the Mercedes dragged the older brother's body down the block.

Police said three other people were taken into custody for questioning at an off-campus housing complex at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth where Dzhokhar Tsarnaev may have lived.

Chechnya, where the Tsarnaev family has roots, has been the scene of two wars between Russian forces and separatists since 1994. That spawned an Islamic insurgency that has carried out deadly bombings in Russia and the region, although not in the West.


Investigators have not offered a motive for the Boston attack. But in interviews with officials and relatives and acquaintances of the Tsarnaev brothers, a picture has emerged of the older brother as someone embittered toward the US and increasingly vehement in his Muslim faith.

The Russian FSB intelligence security service told the FBI in 2011 about information that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was a follower of radical Islam, two law enforcement officials said on Saturday.

According to an FBI news release, a foreign government said that Tamerlan Tsarnaev appeared to be strong believer and that he had changed drastically since 2010 as he prepared to leave the US for travel to a region in that country to join unspecified underground groups.

The FBI did not name the foreign government, but the two officials said it was Russia. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to talk about the matter publicly.

The FBI said that in response, it interviewed Tamerlan Tsarnaev and relatives, and did not find any domestic or foreign terrorism activity. The bureau said it looked into such things as his telephone and online activity, his travels and his associations with others.

An uncle of the Tsarnaev brothers said he had a falling-out with Tamerlan over the man's increased commitment to Islam.

Ruslan Tsarni said Tamerlan told him in a 2009 phone conversation that he had chosen "God's business" over work or school. Tsarni said he then contacted a family friend who told him Tsarnaev had been influenced by a recent convert to Islam.

Tsarni said his relationship with his nephew ended after that call.

'Used' by older brother

As for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, "he's been absolutely wasted by his older brother. I mean, he used him. He used him for whatever he's done," Tsarni said.

Albrecht Ammon, a downstairs-apartment neighbour of Tamerlan Tsarnaev in Cambridge, Massachusetts, said in an interview that the older brother had strong political views about the United States. Ammon quoted Tsarnaev as saying that the US uses the Bible as "an excuse for invading other countries".

Tamerlan Tsarnaev studied accounting as a part-time student at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston for three semesters from 2006 to 2008, the school said. He was married with a young daughter.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was a student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Students said he was on campus this week after the Boston Marathon bombing.

As of Saturday, more than 50 victims of the bombing remained hospitalised, three in critical condition.

  • Kabelo K-breezy Moshime - 2013-04-21 08:41

    This guy should suffer for a very long time!!

      fargone - 2013-04-21 13:10

      He likely will, whichever way you look at it. Perhaps an all expenses paid trip to Gitmo along with waterboarding in the summer and stress positions all winter will help him settle in, alternatively, he is going to be involved in some sort of accident, all in all hope it's nothing trivial.

  • Theodor Herzl - 2013-04-21 08:53

    Motive is simple, for them it's Jihad, a holy war being waged against the West...cowards to say the least. But then with almost everyone being politically correct, when will our eyes open and see the war against our freedom and liberties.

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 09:46

      Poor Palestinians; displaced, disowned and ethnically cleansed, when will our eyes open and see the war against there freedom...

      Ahava Shapiro - 2013-04-21 12:49

      @rick Becker Are you a student of the quraan ? If not, then you should not be quoting this without substantiating your quotes. If you are South African, do you have stats on how many non Muslims where killed after local Muslims read that in their quraan. Do you know how many non Muslims killed other non Muslims in SA in the name of a God ?

      Ahava Shapiro - 2013-04-21 13:35

      They have the same motive as White right wing Christians in South Africa.

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 14:06

      @Rick Becker - Who asked you what the Muslims believe? I agree with Ahava Shapiro, you should not quote as you are clearly not a scholar on these issues. I was going to suggest that you rather continue with your art; but after looking at your work, I would strongly suggest you search for a new career. Have you read your Bible recently? Perhaps you should, look at the sections under 'Stupidity', you might learn something. I'll keep my finger crossed. When next, you want to comment, first understand the issues... than you may open your 'bek'

      Zuko Goldstein - 2013-04-21 16:41

      Joe Mase, they are both ethnic Chechens from southern Russia. What does this have to do with Palestinians?

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 18:59

      @Rick - Well I have news for you; I have read both the Quran and the Torah, read a few versions of the Bible; I have about another 26000 versions to go through. All great books. When you read the section in the Bible, that I mentioned in my previous post, then we will have an intellectual debate. All I see from you are quotes from other people, when you have gathered all your thoughts, let me know. Perhaps than we'll see some meaningful contributions from you.

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 19:06

      @Zuko - Well the FBI are waiting to question this terrorist; how is it that brother Theodore knows the motives before anyone else. he may be right; but his name, the man that started Zionism; thought I would send him a reminder to sweep his front door first. I hope that answers your question.

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-22 04:07

      @ Artistic Rick - what were your intentions with your original post (cut 'n paste); obviously, to create animosity; you are an 'artist' and as Ahava said have no knowledge of the religious scriptures. I can show you quotes from the 26000 bibles that are horrific and bordering on Pornography. It was so bad that in the 60's the NP government banned certain verses of the bible because it have made DH Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's lover look like a book for young teens. If you cannot handle the heat, stay out of the kitchen... I do, most times.

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-22 11:01

      @'Artistic Rick - you have not followed Ahava's advice; first follow her advice than come talk to me... I'm faceless because my nose is too big for Facebook. Maybe we can discuss both scriptures. As long as your intention is NOT to promote hate, I think we can sit down and discuss.

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-22 17:52

      @Rick - What do you know... I gave you a thumbs up for your last comment. I'm curious, why did you posts these verses of the Quran? I fail to see or understand the relevance to this article. I would be very surprised if there are any Muslims that distance themselves from these texts. They are clearly taken out of context and it's not just about reading the verses prior or after these but understanding the historical significance around the relevant revelations. I am Joe Mase and my nose is too big... lol

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-23 03:49

      @Rick - I'm no scholar and this is hardly the platform, suggest you read the entire Quran, keep an open mind (be careful, your nose will grow). I wish there was a simple explanation, suffice to say that it relates to wars of the time. Let me know if you get stuck...

  • TonyM - 2013-04-21 09:05

    Appears Frank is on the same IQ continuum with Juju or should we resort to Cartesian IQ plotting.

  • Rikky_Sellis - 2013-04-21 09:33

    Strange that no report has linked these suspects to the bombing yet, despite ample photo evidence. Gotta love the irony that anti-americans wore baseball caps on the day of the Boston marathon. Race and religion does not have anything to do with this situation. But hey, if everyone's playing the race card...

      Rikky_Sellis - 2013-04-21 10:06

      I think that was the perfect attire. I never said that they should've worn 'I hate America' or 'praise Allah' caps. I simply pointed out the irony. Please send me a link where photo evidence is also included. Please also send me an excerpt of a holy book which stipulates acts of terrorism. If not, then it's stupid and gullible people, not religion. Radical fundamentalism in all religions have catastrophic incidents. From cults, to skewed policies, to the banning of evolution in education; I promise you that just as many people have died from Christian hands than Muslim. Spanish inquisition, Northern Ireland, pagan wars, witch hunts etc... Why pin it on religion if that religion does not state anywhere that killing is negotiable with god?

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 14:13

      @Michael Hugh Blake - Another village idiot...

      Rikky Sellis - 2013-04-21 14:55

      I concede Michael, that the Islam religion overall is far more violent in comparison with the Christian bible, if we compare the Bible with all three Islam's main texts. Thanx for the quotes. Islam's texts are much more prescriptive in their violence where the bible is much more descriptive. Strange that Christians also brought violence into play, despite no prescription... Still, irony doesn't disappear when it's intentional, I believe your thinking about dramatic irony where the character is not aware of some of the developments in contrast with the audience. As an atheist, I would argue that both sides of the religious fence has contributed to atrocious violence which cannot be sustained in the 21st century, especially now with the new found knowledge thanx to Michael.

  • Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 09:43

    I hope he survives... tells all, then suffers.

      Tebogo Mokowe - 2013-04-21 10:33

      Ma ka vuke n face his deeds,they must all pay.

      Garth Baldwin - 2013-04-21 11:20

      I hope he survives too.. we could learn a lot from studying this man

  • Ahava Shapiro - 2013-04-21 10:23

    The Boston globe has some really insightful articles and videos on this suspect. I like the fact that the reporte can be contacted via email too.

  • Philip Schalkwyk - 2013-04-21 10:35

    If he's in no condition to be interrogated, why the need for a "heavy' guard?

  • Ntombi Zulu - 2013-04-21 11:06

    at rikky. cudnt agree more. do u think its becos usa pokes it' s big nose and causes enemies all over the world. then the ignorants want to blame muslims. now usa is going to support the rebels in syria and they gona create the next saddam.

  • Paulson Meziri - 2013-04-21 11:44

    This script read that d uncle said that he increase his followership of islam. Dose it mean that when someone follow islam closely then blood of hate

      Joe Mase - 2013-04-21 15:10

      Ek se bra, say it in Afrikaans, I have no idea what you trying to say...

  • lacrimosewolf - 2013-04-21 18:53

    "Men who believe absurdities will commit atrocities." ~Voltaire

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