A federal appeals court has upheld the death sentence of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the grounds that the judge in the case did not properly veto the jury over possible bias stemming from pre-trial publicity.
“An essential promise of our criminal justice system is that even the worst among us deserves to be judged fairly and punished fairly – a point made strongly by the then US Massage Attorney during a crackdown on end of the trial, “all three wrote the judicial panel.
They added: “To help make the promise a reality, the lengthy decisions in our books say that a judge handling a case involving preconceived notions should derive the ̵6;type and degree’ of exposure of each future lawyer to the case or parties, “if asked by counsel, see Patriarchate v. United States, 402 F.2d 314, 318 (1 Cir. 1968) – only then can the judge reliably assess whether a potential lawyer can ignore that publicity, as required law. diligent effort, the judge here did not meet the standard set by the Patriarchate and his successors. “
Tsarnaev was convicted and sentenced to death in 2015 for carrying out the April 15, 2013 attack on the marathon finish line with his older brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who died in a shootout with police after a maneuver.
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The marathon attack killed three people and injured more than 260 others. Tsarnaev’s lawyers had tried to overturn his death sentence. They said it was impossible to find a fair jury in Boston because the blasts traumatized the region.
Many of the charges against which Tsarnaev was convicted were upheld by the appellate court, but for those charges admissible by death, the court ordered a new trial at the sentencing stage. Thus Tsarnaev could again be sentenced to death, but the government must first decide whether it wants to pursue the death penalty.
The Department of Justice now has the option of requiring the entire “en banc” appellate court in Boston to hear the appeal or the DOJ may request the Supreme Court to review the case.
The three judges who made the decision were: Juan Torruella, the Reagan nominee who objected in part; Rogeriee Thompson, an Obama nominee who wrote the opinion; and William Kayatta, who is also Obama’s nominee.
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Fox News arrived at the U.S. Attorney’s Office and they said they are considering the opinion and will have more to say in the coming weeks.
Bill Mears, Fox News, Andrew Fone and the Associated Press contributed to this report.