US President Donald Trump on Sunday called for the death penalty for the Boston Marathon bomber, after an appeals court overturned the death sentence.
“Rarely has anybody deserved the death penalty more than the Boston Bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. The court agreed that this ‘was one of the worst domestic terrorist attacks since the 9/11 atrocities’. Yet the appellate court tossed out the death sentence,” tweeted Trump.
“So many lives lost and ruined. The Federal Government must again seek the Death Penalty in a do-over of that chapter of the original trial. Our Country cannot let the appellate decision stand. Also, it is ridiculous that this process is taking so long!” he added.
On Friday, a federal appeals court tossed the death sentence of Tsarnaev, who was convicted in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.
A three-judge panel of the 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals ordered a new penalty-phase trial, finding that the judge who oversaw the case didn't sufficiently vet jurors for biases.
“But make no mistake: Dzhokhar will spend his remaining days locked up in prison, with the only matter remaining being whether he will die by execution,” the judges said.
The April 15, 2013, attack killed three people and injured more than 260 others.
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. However, they argued that Dzhokar Tsarnaev is less culpable than his brother, who they said was the mastermind behind the attack.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev died in a gun battle with police a few days after the bombing. Dzhokar Tsarnaev is now behind bars at a high-security supermax prison in Florence, Colorado.
Dzhokar Tsarnaez was sentenced to death by a jury in May of 2015. Members of the jury had been tasked with deciding whether Tsarnaev should be sentenced to life in prison or death.
Tsarnaev was convicted in April of 2015 on 30 charges, including conspiracy and use of a weapon of mass destruction.
He has confirmed that his older brother Tamerlan was behind the 2013 attack and that he “wanted to defend Islam from attack.”
Following the bombings, the FBI discovered that Tamerlan Tsarnaev had sent text messages to his mother as early as 2011 suggesting he was willing to die for Islam.
The interfaith group Americans for Peace and Tolerance said after the attack that the mosque attended by the two brothers “has a curriculum that radicalizes people.”