Michele McPhee escapes death threats and more back in the States and begins la dolce vita in bella Italia. READ MORE
Patricia Smith was 2 when her mother, Moira, became the only female among the 23 NYPD cops to perish in the World Trade Center Towers on 9/11. As a military court prepares to bring the al Qaeda operatives to justice she stared down one of the terrorists. READ MORE
Controversy over a Black Lives Matter banner affixed to the front of City Hall in the blue collar suburb of Somerville, Massachusetts, continued to rage today as Mayor Joseph Curtatone announced that the sign would stay despite a request from the police union’s president to replace it with a banner that says "All Lives Matter." Curtatone's decision has prompted both outrage and praise in the community.
“The mayor has clearly chosen a side, and it’s not to support law enforcement,” Somerville Police Employees Association President Michael McGrath told ABC News today. Read More
The Bulger Asset Auction
The auction today for the belongings of Boston's most notorious mobster, James "Whitey" Bulger, began with a pair of size 9.5 sneakers.
"You can walk in Whitey's shoes," auctioneer Bob Sheehan announced as he opened the bidding. Within seconds they were sold, still in the box, for $50. Other sneakers sold for $35, a third pair fetched $40. Four pairs of his "slightly worn" dress shoes went for $240.
And someone might be wearing his white bucket hat, the one Bulger was wearing when U.S. Marshals cornered him in the garage of his Santa Monica, California, hideout in June 2011. Read More
The search for missing art stolen more than two decades ago from Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum has taken FBI agents to six continents around the world. But the most active lead seems to be in the backyard of an aging mobster in a small town in Connecticut.
Boston FBI field office spokeswoman Kristen Setera confirmed to ABC News that the “FBI is conducting court-authorized activity at 69 Frances Drive in Manchester, [Connecticut], in connection with an ongoing federal investigation,” but declined to comment further.
It is the third time the FBI has executed search warrants in and around that particular ranch house, the home of Robert “Bobby the Cook” Gentile, who is currently serving a 2-and-a-half-year federal sentence on unrelated drug and gun charges that came with his 2015 arrest by the FBI. Read More
A South Boston woman who spent 16 years on the run with one of Boston’s most notorious gangsters, James “Whitey” Bulger, was sentenced to spend another 21 months behind bars by a federal judge who called her longtime companion “a monster” not worthy of her “love and affection.”
Catherine Greig, 65, is currently serving an eight-year sentence for her role in helping Bulger escape and evade capture after he was tipped to a pending federal indictment by his rogueFBI handler in 1995. She wore a black sweater in court today, her white hair cut short, and smiled at her twin sister Margaret, who was in the courtroom, sitting across from the relatives of two Bulger murder victims. Read More
Read more HERE
The possibility is part of the MSP’s wide-ranging probe into the crash that killed Trooper Thomas Clardy, who was laid to rest Tuesday. Read More
The terror group ISIS has created a whole “industry” out of the production of fake passports, a high-level French official said today.
French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve told reporters that through ISIS’s operations in Syria, Iraq and Libya, the group has acquired blank passports and has now set up a “real fake document industry.” Cazeneuve made the statement following a meeting with top European officials where he proposed setting up a new task force to help nab people attempting to come into the European Union with fake papers. Read More
One of the tourniquets issued to Boston police officers after the April 15, 2013, Boston Marathon bombing that killed three and left 17 people as amputees helped save the life of a plainclothes drug officer recently after he was shot, allegedly by a convict out on probation, officials said today.
The officer, a nine-year veteran of the force assigned to a drug control unit in the city's Mattapan neighborhood, had attempted to pull over a man that Police Commissioner William Evans said "was well known to police" as a drug dealer and was driving with a suspended license. Read More
With the U.S. and other countries on high alert for ISIS attacks, American authorities are warning the terror group’s followers may have infiltrated American borders with authentic-looking passports ISIS has printed itself with its own machines, according to an intelligence report obtained by ABC News.
The 17-page Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Intelligence Report, issued to law enforcement last week, says ISIS likely has been able to print legitimate-looking Syrian passports since taking over the city of Deir ez-Zour last summer, home to a passport office with “boxes of blank passports” and a passport printing machine. Another passport office was located in Raqqa, Syria, which has long been ISIS’s de facto capital. Read More
The longtime companion of convicted Boston mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger pleaded not guilty today to federal contempt charges for refusing to tell a grand jury who helped them go on the lam.
Alex Ciccolo has been troubled since he was a teenager. He is charged with conspiring with ISIS to attack Americans. Read More
Alex Ciccolo Admired Boston Marathon Bombers, Feds Say Read More
Prior to Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's death sentence last week, the last person judged worthy of the ultimate punishment in a Boston courthouse has spent more than a decade on death row assaulting prison inmates and staff, writing an autobiography and ordering cappuccino through the prison's commissary, according to court records and a prison official.
Gary Lee Sampson, who grew up in Massachusetts, was sentenced to death in 2003 on federal carjacking and murder charges stemming from a week-long crime spree that left three people dead. The judgment against him was read in the same Boston courthouse where Tsarnaev, theBoston Marathon bomber, heard Friday he would suffer the same fate. Read More
Liz Norden, who wanted Tsarnaev to get the death penalty for detonating the bomb that left two of her sons amputees and their bodies forever burned and scarred, cried quietly when the jury decided that the 21-year-old should die for his crimes. Read More
Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was “genuinely sorry for what he did,” famed anti-death penalty advocated and nun Sister Helen Prejean told a Boston court today.
Prejean said she spoke to Tsarnaev in recent days and, after the two had “established trust,” Tsarnaev told her that “no one deserves to suffer like they [the bombing victims] did.” Read More
Federal prosecutors want the nun who inspired the movie "Dead Man Walking" to be prevented from testifying in the case of the Boston Marathon bomber, according to court records.
At a sidebar conference with U.S. District Court Judge George O'Toole, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's defense team said that they may rest their case as early as today after jurors hear testimony from Sister Helen Prejean, a staunch death penalty opponent. Read More
By Michele McPhee
May 4, 2015
For weeks Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev showed no emotion during heartrending testimony from his maimed victims or the loved ones of those left dead. He didn’t flinch as videos of the bloody aftermath of his bomb were played in court that showed anguished screams twisting the faces of two young women he was convicted of killing, along with the last breaths of dying eight-year-old boy.
But today for the first time the convicted killer reached for a box of tissues and dabbed away tears as a string of female relatives from Russia took the stand in his defense – many who had not seen him in years. One, his aunt Patimat Suleimanova, was so distraught when testifying that she began weeping uncontrollably, sobs echoing through the courtroom, until she had to be removed. Read More
Several Russian nationals summoned to the U.S. to testify in defense of bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev are staying in the Boston area under "hotel arrest" and are closely monitored by the FBI, law enforcement officials told ABC News.
One of the witnesses called by the defense flew to the U.S. only to be turned around in Boston's airport by American customs agents after he admitted to fighting along Islamist militants in southern Russia, officials said. Read More
By Michele McPhee
April 28, 2013
In the months before the marathon attack, Tamerlan’s Tsarnaev’s wife searched the Internet for “wife of mujahedeen” and “what are the rewards for wives of mujahedeen,” according to testimony in the bomber trial Tuesday.
After the bombings, Katherine Russell, who now uses her married name Karima Tsarnaeva, exchanged texts with a childhood friend about the carnage at the finish line and said, “Although a lot more people are killed every day in Syria and other places. Innocent people.”
“I thought it was strange she was bringing that up in this situation,” Gina Crawford told the court. Crawford said she had been interviewed by the FBI twice in 2013.
Katherine Russell has not been charged in connection with the April 15, 2013 bombings that killed three, left another 17 amputees, and wounded more than 240 others. But her name has been brought up several times during the penalty phase of the trial by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s defense team as they try to save him from the death penalty by blaming his older brother as the architect of the attacks.
Tamerlan, 26, was killed on April 19, 2013 when he was shot in a wild firefight with police in Watertown and then hit and dragged by his brother during a getaway. His death capped a two-day crime spree that started with the murder of MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, the carjacking of a Cambridge businessman, and the bomb and bullet battle in Watertown.
“The man who conceived, planned, and led this crime is beyond our power to punish,” defense attorney David Bruck told the court in his opening statement Monday. “Only the 19-year-old brother who helped is left.”
Katherine Russell’s mother Judith, a nurse, also took the stand for the defense Monday and said that her daughter met Tamerlan at a nightclub while she was a student at Suffolk University. Katherine brought Tamerlan home to meet her mother in a meeting that left Judith Russell unimpressed, she testified.
“He didn’t really seem interested in getting to know us, so it didn’t start off on a really good feeling,” Judith Russell told the court. “We weren’t real happy with her choice in the relationship.” In fact, she said, there had been reports of physical abuse at the hands of Tamerlan that came from her former roommate, who also testified.
After Tamerlan traveled to Russia in 2012 their interest in Islam intensified, she said. With Tamerlan, she said, it bordered on “obsession.”
“She was covering and he started to grow his body hair,” Judith Russell said. “There was progression of his belief system and passion.”
After Tamerlan was killed, Judith woke up to her other daughter crying. “I wanted to know what was going on, and she said, ‘Katie thinks that Tamerlan’s dead.”’
She insisted that she did not recognize her son-in-law in the photos released by the FBI the day before Tamerlan was killed. “I didn’t think it was him,” Russell testified. “I’d never met Jahar, and I didn’t think it was Tamerlan.”
Judith Russell then drove to Cambridge to pick up her daughter and granddaughter Zahira. There she called the FBI and met agents at the Cambridge police station where she was grilled.
She said her daughter is “healing” but not living at home. “Obviously it hasn’t been as hard as all the other victims in Boston, but she’s getting her life together is more kind of lighter in spirit and more like the Katie that we know.”
On cross-examination Judith Russell said Katherine still wears a headscarf and is a practicing Muslim. In fact, she recommended that her mother read “Islam for Dummies.”
By Michele McPhee – Boston
Jurors who will decide whether Boston marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should be sentenced to death or life in prison were warned by a federal judge today not to attend next week’s Boston Marathon or participate in any events marking the two-year anniversary of the “crime the defendant now stands convicted of.”
US District Court Justice George O’Toole held a brief hearing this morning in the same courtroom where Tsarnaev was convicted in a 30-count federal indictment on charges including murder and using a weapon of mass destruction last Wednesday April 8.
“As you know, the Boston Marathon is not just a matter of local but of national and international interest,” O’Toole told the jurors, one of whom was wearing a Star Wars t-shirt. “Do not attend the Boston Marathon.”
O’Toole told the jurors that the penalty phase of Tsarnaev’s trial, which is scheduled to begin a day after the 119th running of the historic Boston Marathon on Monday, should last roughly four weeks.
Tomorrow marks two years since Tsarnaev and his older brother Tamerlan, prosecutors said, detonated two powerful pressure cooker bombs secreted in backpacks near the finish line of the marathon. Three people were killed, 8-year-old Martin Richard, 23-year-old Boston University student Lingzi Lu; and Krystle Marie Campbell, 29, a popular restaurant manager. Another 17 people became amputees and more than 240 others were hurt and maimed, according to testimony in Tsarnaev’s trial.
On April 18, 2013, in the hours after the FBI released photos of the bombing suspects in baseball caps, the Tsarnaev brothers launched a two-day crime spree during which they executed MIT Police Officer Sean Collier; carjacked and terrorized a young businessman, and engaged police in a bomb and bullet battle on leafy suburban street in Watertown.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, was killed in the firefight. The younger Tsarnaev, then 19, fled the scene and hid in a dry-docked boat, wounded and bleeding where he scrawled an anti-American screed with a bloody pencil and carved “stop killing our innocent people and we will stop” on a wooden plank.
Jurors will hear evidence during the second phase of Tsarnaev’s trial Tuesday through Friday next week because of Monday’s Patriot’s Day holiday, O’Toole instructed. For the duration of the trial jurors will be seated Monday through Friday, he said.
Defense attorneys have argued that Tsarnaev came under the influence of his older brother. In closing arguments Judy Clarke told jurors that she plans to prove with evidence presented in the case “that Tamerlan built the bombs, Tamerlan murdered Officer Collier, Tamerlan led and Jahar followed.”
Assistant US Attorney Aloke Chakravarty told jurors that the younger Tsarnaev was just as radicalized as his older brother, dedicated to the bloodletting on Americans. Only Dzhokhar was better at hiding it, he said in his closing statement. “Unlike Tamerlan, the defendant had led a double life,’’ Chakravarty said. “To the outside world he showed one face and inside he harbored another.”
Mar 31, 2015, 4:26 PM ET
By TOM LLAMAS and MICHELE McPHEE
In the Boston Marathon bombing trial the prosecution took 92 witnesses and more than three weeks to present their case, but today the defense for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev rested after just four witnesses and about six hours.
Weeks ago during opening statements defense attorney Judy Clarke admitted to Tsarnaev’s role in the bombing and the violent aftermath, but argued it was Dzhokhar’s older brother Tamerlan who was primarily responsible for the mayhem nearly two years ago in April 2013. In the six hours she used today, Clarke focused on evidence that she said showed it was Tamerlan who “led the way.” Read More
BOSTON — Mar 30, 2015, 12:54 PM ET
By MICHELE McPHEE and TOM LLAMAS
The government today rested its case against accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev after teary-eyed jurors heard grueling, heartbreaking testimony about the bombing's youngest victim, 8-year-old Martin Richard.
Richard was 4 ft. 5 in. tall and just under 70 lbs. when he was killed in the Boston Marathon attacks on April 15, 2013, Chief Medical Examiner Henry Nields testified. The entire length of his small body was blasted with small nails, tiny pieces of black plastic, round metal pellets, small fragments of wood, segments of black plastic, and metal pieces of the bomb allegedly detonated by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in front of the Forum restaurant, Nields said. Read More
Campbell died of blast injuries to torso,
By Michele McPhee - Boston
March 26, 2015
Jurors in the marathon bombing trial had visible reactions to what a federal judge called “vivid photographs,” that depicted the broken bones, burns, and mangled flesh suffered by Krystle Campbell, who died in the first blast.
Before medical examiner Jennifer Hammers took the stand this afternoon, US District Court judge George O’Toole warned jurors that they would be shown “vivid photographs” that were not shown to spectators in the court. One juror winced. Another covered her mouth with her hand. Sighs were audible. One welled with tears.
The photo of the 29-year-old restaurant manager was shown after Hammers detailed Campbell’s manner of death as homicide and her cause of death as “blast injuries to her torso.”
Hammers, who now works in the NYC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, detailed a long list of injuries sustained by the woman, who went to the marathon with her best friend, Karen Rand McWatters, after the two took in the Red Sox game on Patriot’s Day 2013 and even paused to pose for a picture.
“It was a beautiful day,” McWatters testified “We were being silly and touristy.”
Then came a blast that threw both women to the ground. “I remember lying on the ground wondering if I was a dreaming, if I had really made it to the marathon.”
There was something wrong with McWatters own left leg, but she wanted to be closer to Krystal so they could comfort one another.
“I wanted to drag myself over to her…I got close to her head, we put our faces together. She said very slowly said that her legs hurt,’’ McWatters said. “Her hand went limp in mine and she never spoke again.” Jurors saw a photo of the women in the bloody chaos, their heads pressed together, an emergency worker stood over them with her hands on each of their hearts.
Hammers said that parts of the bomb were embedded in Campbell’s body, as were multiple BBs used in the construction of the bombs. Her femur was snapped with the force of the explosion, her body covered with third-degree burns. Jurors saw an evidence bag containing BBs removed from her flesh during the autopsy.
Earlier in the day jurors heard evidence about how those BBs were used to construct the bombs, and then saw a mockup of the pressure cooker devices construction demonstrated by a FBI bomb technician.
Three days after the deadly 2013 Boston Marathon explosions, investigators say bombing suspects Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev used a Ruger 9mm semi-automatic handgun to murder MIT police officer Sean Collier, carjack a young businessman, and hours later to fire on police in a vicious gunfight. Now with Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on trial, witnesses and court documents have shed new light on the pistol’s curious path through a criminal underground and purportedly into the hands of the brothers who were once the most wanted men in America. Read More
Jurors in the trial of suspected Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev saw video today of the defendant and his brother Tamerlan outside of a New Hampshire firing range where they rented two pistols to practice shooting 9mm ammunition - the same kind of bullets used in the weapon that killed a police officer and was part of wild gunfight with law enforcement days after the marathon blasts.Read More
By Michele McPhee – Boston
March 17, 2015
A Cambridge man referred to in testimony against the marathon bomber from his best friend found himself in the same courthouse on charges related to the gun that prosecutors said was used to execute MIT Police Officer Sean Collier.
Stephen Silva, 21, who described Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as “a person I consider a best friend” on the stand today, told the court that he lent a Ruger P95 to the bomber in February 2013. Silva said he got the gun months earlier from another friend, “Howie,” and kept it hidden in a ceiling tile at his apartment wrapped in a tube sock.
That man, Merhawi “Howie” Berhe, was in court at the exact time Silva was testifying about the weapon for a detention hearing, according to a court docket. Berhe was arrested last week at his Cambridge home and indicted on federal charges related to possessing the Ruger in the winter of 2012, according to court records.
Howie, Silva testified, gave him the gun because “his mother had searched his room and he needed to get it out of his house.” Silva wrapped the gun in a tube sock and hid in the ceiling of a Revere apartment he shared with his identical twin brother Steven and another man.
Silva described using the gun to rip off two men in Cambridge, and said he brought it to a New Year’s Eve party in Medford in 2012 before he lent it to Tsarnaev in February 2012.
Tsarnaev told Silva, he said on the stand, wanted the gun to commit a “rip” or a robbery of University of Rhode Island students. Silva said that he tried to get the gun back from Tsarnaev, but that “he kept making excuses.”
“Howie kept calling me and asking me for the gun,’’ Silva said.
Berhe’s attorney William Connolly said he had no comment other than to say that his client was released after a detention hearing held on the fifth floor of the same courthouse where Silva was testifying on the third floor. “I can’t comment on any discussions I had with my client,’’ Connolly said.
BOSTON — Mar 12, 2015
By MICHELE McPHEE
In a frantic phone call to 911, a Boston man shouted that he had just been hijacked by two men and that “they did the marathon explosions!”
The call was made just past midnight April 19, four days after two bombs ripped through the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three people and injuring 260 others.Read More
BOSTON — Mar 11, 2015
By MICHELE McPHEE
In the Boston Marathon bombing trial today jurors were shown through new videos and images of the grisly murder of MIT police officer Sean Collier, who was killed three days after the deadly dual marathon explosions. Read More
BOSTON — Mar 10, 2015
By MICHELE McPHEE
Today jurors in the Boston Marathon bombing case may learn more about what prosecutors call Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's "hidden" side with testimony from the FBI about the accused bomber’s secret online life -- one that embraced radical extremism and sent out an ominous message about the marathon in 2012. Read More
BOSTON — Mar 2, 2015, 12:10 PM ET
By MICHELE McPHEE
Defense attorneys for accused marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev want jurors to see the blood-splattered, bullet-riddled boat where the then teenager wrote a note as he hid, wounded and bleeding, hours before being captured by police.
"The evidence here is the boat. It’s movable and it’s very powerful. The jury should be able to see it. It’s really quite striking," argued Tsaraev’s defense attorney William Fick in court today. "The jury should be allowed to see that in its entirety."
Among the scrawlings Tsarnaev's attorneys now acknowledged he wrote on the boat is “We Muslims are one body. You kill one of us, you hurt us all.”
"The government is killing our innocent civilians but most of you already know that,” another portion of the blood-streaked message says. Parts of the note can be seen in an image from the boat obtained by ABC News. Read More
By Michele McPhee
February 28, 2015
"Kicka" Lang is a drug dealing murderer who was found guilty of killing Suffolk County Sheriff Ricky Dever in cold blood. Dever, a beloved law enforcement officer from Dorchester, was escorting him from a Charlestown bar.
Boston Herald story:
By Michele McPhee
Boston Herald Police Bureau Chief
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
One cop spat out the word that precisely describes Francis “Kicka” Lang yesterday after the career thug was found guilty of murdering a respected lawman.
Lang was convicted of murder in the first degree for repeatedly stabbing Sgt. Richard “Ricky” Dever, a 35-year-old Suffolk deputy sheriff who died protecting the patrons of a Charlestown pub last March.
After the verdict was read, Lang proved he was worse than a maggot when he sneered and spewed these vile words to the victim’s family in court:
“Life is better than death,” Lang blurted with a sick grin. “I’m doing better than Ricky.”
But grace is the word that precisely describes the Dever family. And watching their stoic dignity as they refused to be provoked by the words of a lowlife makes it clear how Ricky Dever became a man of grace as well, a man loved and appreciated by his fellow sheriffs, his Dorchester neighbors, even the cons he guarded at South Bay prison.
Dever’s parents, William and Kathleen, and his sister, Sheila, winced and then quietly wept; his brothers Brendan and Tim were stone-faced. None reacted.
Lang, after all, is the “Anti-Ricky,” as Brendan Dever, a Boston police officer, said yesterday in an emotional victim impact statement.
“Words cannot describe how much loathing I have for you,” the cop told Lang. “You are nothing but a disgrace to Boston, to Charlestown, and to society as a whole.
“Ricky had the heart of a lion. You’re a coward,” Dever said.
Lang, a career criminal, had been out of federal prison for just 22 days when he tried to enter Sullivan’s, a bar he had been banned from, armed with a knife to start trouble.
Dever had escorted him outside when Lang pounced, stabbing the sheriff over and over before slashing him across the face.
Then he ran and hid.
During his trial, Lang giggled with his defense attorneys, smirked at court spectators, and loudly declared, “I’ll be home in a week,” according to brother Tim Dever’s impact statement.
“For two weeks we have heard about the actions of two completely opposite men, my brother Rick and Francis Lang,” he said. “Rick was murdered over nothing at all. Kicka IS going home. Back to prison to live like the animal and coward he is.”
Tim Dever also spoke about how on the night his brother was murdered, his wife was pregnant with the couple’s second child, a boy that would be named for his fallen uncle. Tim’s first child, a little girl named Elizabeth, was Ricky’s goddaughter.
“Little Rick will not have his own memories of his uncle,” Tim Dever said.
But it was the words of Kathleen Dever that moved the hardbitten BPD detectives - who, along with prosecutor Ed Zabin, were praised yesterday - to tears.
“There is one question I need to ask you Mr. Lang,” she said softly. “Why? You took away the heart and soul of our family.
“The words ‘He didn’t make it’ go over and over in my mind every night.”
Kathleen Dever then recalled the phrase she whispers over her son’s grave as she grapples with the torment of life without him.
“Damn you, Kicka, for changing our lives forever.”
After Judge Stephen E. Neel sentenced Lang to life without parole, the Dever family left the courtroom to an explosion of applause from the more than 200 Boston cops and sheriffs crowding the hallway. The thunderous clapping recognized the family for raising a man who was the polar opposite of his killer.
Before leaving the courthouse, a juror grasped Tim Dever’s hand and squeezed it saying, “I hope you get some peace from this.”
But now this Walpole lifer has a Facebook account, and he is not shy about giving his location leaving out only the fact that he is in a DDU cell. What else is the MA DOC allowing inmates to access on the web?
By Michele McPhee – Boston
February 24, 2015
A judge has denied a request from defense attorneys of accused marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to bar his supporters, many of them teenage girls and others who treat him as a dashing figure who is the victim of an orchestrated government plot to frame an innocent man, from assembling outside the federal courthouse.
The ruling was filed today, as jury selection resumed after an abrupt cancelation in the questioning of jurors yesterday. Last week a court official announced that jury selection is expected to be completed this week and opening arguments could come as early as the first week in March.
Despite their steadfast claims of Tsarnaev’s innocence, his defense team wanted to sever those supporters views from their client’s trial and filed a motion with the court in late December to keep the accused bomber’s “self-appointed supporters,” away from the South Boston trial.
Some supporters some wear T-shirts emblazoned with his face and the word “Innocent,” or hold provocative signs like “Got Proof,” from massing in front of the courthouse, attesting what the accused bomber’s lawyers called “outrageous conspiracy theories.”
“Survivors, jurors, witnesses, and members of the public must be able to attend court without being assaulted by inflammatory accusations,” Tsarnaev’s attorneys wrote.
On Dec. 18, the day Tsarnaev was in court for the first time since his arraignment in July 2013, one such victim had a verbal altercation with a Tsarnaev supporter, one of the many that call themselves “Jaharians,’’ a play on his nickname Jahar.
Marc Fucarile is one of 16 amputees maimed in the dual blasts that prosecutors say were detonated by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his older brother Tamerlan, 26, near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Four days later, prosecutors said, the Tsarnaevs executed MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, carjacked a man, and engaged police in the bomb and bullet battle in Watertown, a gunfight that left Tamerlan dead.
He was among the more than a dozen victims who attended a hearing who saw the swarm of supporters outside. He paused to read the signs and then pulled up his pant leg to show the supporters his prosthetic leg and muttered under his breath, “Get a life.”
Liz Norden, whose two sons J.P. and Paul Norden were part of a crowd along with Fucarile cheering a Stoneham firefighter across the finish line, also lost legs and suffered critical injuries, plans to attend the trial daily and supports the death penalty for Tsarnaev.
Norden said the Tsarnaev supporters have a right to assemble, but she doesn’t want to see them. “I know they have a right to their opinion,” Norden told ABC News, “but they are supporting an animal and I don’t think people should be ambushed by their opinions.”
There was also an outburst at the end of Dec. 18 hearing where Tsarnaev, who looked pale and drawn, nothing like the swaggering teen brought into court with his face swollen with gunshot wounds, assured a federal judge he was pleased with his defense. Tsarnaev supporter Elena Teyer yelled in Russian, "Dzhokhar, we know you're innocent. We pray for you. Be strong, son,” as the 21-year-old defendant was led out of the courtroom. In English she added, “Stop killing innocent boys,’’ before she was escorted out.
Teyer said she is the mother-in-law of Ibragim Todashev, a Chechen shot and killed after he attacked a FBI agent during an interrogation in his Orlando apartment about the Tsarnaev brothers and an unsolved triple murder in Waltham that ABC News was the first to report that Tamerlan Tsarnaev is considered a suspect in those homicides, which left the victims nearly beheaded.
Still, the self-appointed supporters appear to be the only ones one Tsarnaev’s side.
His parents, Anzor Tsarnaev and Zubeidat Tsarnaeva, who were divorced in 2011, returned to Dagestan, Russia in 2012 where they reconciled and never came back to the United States. Zubeidat Tsarnaeva, who has been outspoken about her sons’ innocence and has even adopted some of the conspiracy theories disseminated by the Jaharians, would likely be arrested if she did return on an open arrest warrant connected to a shoplifting case, according to Natick police.
It remains unclear if Tsarnaev’s sisters, Bella and Ailina, who are living in New Jersey, or his brother’s widow Katherine Russell Tsarnaeva, will attend the trial.
The mystery man who was photographed as he shoveled snow off the iconic Boston Marathon finish line during Tuesday's raging blizzard has been identified as bartender Chris Laudani of Back Bay Social, a neighborhood restaurant. Read More
By Michele McPhee – Boston
January 13, 2015
Defense attorneys for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev said that terror attacks in France will lead to “extraordinary prejudice” against the accused marathon bomber at his upcoming trial and asked for jury selection to be suspended for a month, according to a court motion filed today.
Tsarnaev’s lawyers said that the murders of 12 journalists at Charlie Hebdo in Paris followed by the murder of a French policewoman and the slayings of four people at a Jewish deli came the same week jury selection began for the accused Boston bomber.
“Almost immediately after the attacks, the press, politicians, and commentators drew parallels between the French attacks and the Boston Marathon bombing. The supposed parallels included the fact that the suspects were brothers, that they reportedly were influenced by the lectures and writings of Anwar al-Awlaki, that they were “homegrown” terrorists, and that they attacked civilians in a Western city,’’ the motion reads. “These parallels so widely expressed cannot be lost on potential jurors.”
US District Court Justice George O’Toole admonished potential jurors who sat in a jury hall with Tsarnaev last week to fill out sealed 28-page questionnaires last week not to read any media reports regarding the defendant, who could face the death penalty on a 30-count federal indictment charging him with murder.
So far more than 120 potential jurors have been excused. Phase two of juror selection is slated to begin Thursday where potential jurors will be interviewed by prosecutors and defense attorneys.
Accused Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in federal court today to face potential jurors. Dressed in cream-colored pants, a button-down under a charcoal sweater with a bearded chin, Tsarnaev sat flanked by his attorneys at the defense table in the jury pool room. His father tells ABC News that the US wants to "harm" his son. Read More
By Michele McPhee – Boston
December 19, 2014
A close friend of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev entered a surprise guilty plea today, telling a federal judge that he did transfer a Ruger P95 9mm pistol in Feb. 2013 – the same gun that prosecutors say was used by the Tsarnaev brothers to allegedly murder an MIT police officer and engage police in a Watertown gun battle.
Stephen Silva, 21, a Cambridge Rindge and Latin classmate of Tsarnaev pleaded guilty to an 8-count federal indictment charging him with heroin dealing and possessing “a Ruger model P95 9 mm pistol, which had the importer’s and manufacturer’s serial number removed, obliterated, and altered.”
That is the same pistol described in federal court documents as being used by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 21, and his brother Tamerlan, 26, to allegedly executive a MIT police officer and engage police in a firefight in Watertown days after they are believed to have detonated two backpack bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
Tamerlan emptied the gun when firing at police and then threw the empty weapon at the officers before he was killed, the documents say. Dzhokhar was injured, but survived the firefight and would be apprehended hours later. He has pleaded not guilty to a litany of charges related to the marathon bombing.
Silvas lawyer Jonathon Shapiro refused to comment on whether his client’s guilty plea indicated that he would testify against his Tsarnaev, who, according to police records, was cited as a reason that Silva “smoked a lot of weed.” During a Nov. 2013 arrest Silva told MBTA Police that he used marijuana because “His best friend was the bomber.”
“I’m not speculating on anything as to the future trial,’’ Shapiro said. The plea agreement Shapiro negotiated with prosecutors remains under court seal.
Assistant United States Attorney Peter Levitt told the court that Silva had sold drugs to an undercover FBI agent and a cooperating witness a total of 9 times in the summer of 2014. The undercover agent and the cooperating witness would pick Silva up at a Dunkin Donuts on Memorial Drive and drive him to a heroin supplier in Medford, Levitt told the court. During one of those rides, he was recorded telling the UC and during one of those buys he was captured on tape talking about the Ruger, saying he “transferred it to another individual.”
Levitt did not mention the Tsarnaev brothers but told the court that the gun was “subsequently recovered.”
When the judge asked Silva if he had committed the gun offense Silva answered, “Yes I did your honor.”
Though the Ruger’s serial number was damaged, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was able to use what was left to track it to a gun to a store in Maine where it had been purchased legally, law enforcement sources said. The original buyer told investigators he gave it to a Portland, Maine drug dealing gang. The alleged leader of that gang has been identified in federal court records as Biniam “Icy” Tsegai, also from Eritrea. Tsegai and others were indicted by federal prosecutors in Maine last year and in recent weeks several of those charged with drug-related crimes have pleaded guilty or been sentenced, according to FBI releases and court records. It is unclear what connection “Icy” or his associates may have had with Silva or the Tsarnaevs.
Michele McPhee - Boston
December 15, 2014
Accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is expected to appear in federal court for a final status conference hearing Thursday before his trial is slated to begin on murder and terrorism charges next month – making it the first time he has been seen in 17 months.
Tsarnaev, 21, has not been seen in court since his arraignment in June 2013 on charges that he and his brother Tamerlan detonated two pressure cooker bombs near the finish line, killing three and wounding more than 260 others with 16 of those victims losing limbs. Four days later, prosecutors said, the Tsarnaev brothers murdered MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, carjacked a Mercedes SUV, and led police on a high-speed chase in Watertown where a bomb and bullet battle erupted in the street.
Tamerlan was killed in the firefight. Dzhokhar fled the scene and hid for more than 16 hours until his capture on a dry-docked boat, where, prosecutors said, he explained his motive for the crime with a note written inside.
“We Muslims are one body. You hurt one of us you hurt us all,’’ part of the confession allegedly written by Tsarnaev read. “Know you are fighting men who look into the barrel your gun and see heaven.”
A photo of the bloodstained bullet-pocked note was obtained by ABC News.
Among the issues expected to be discussed Thursday the jury selection process, which is slated to being Jan. 5. The trial is expected to run for 2 to 3 months.
Defense attorneys want the judge to include a question for potential juror that would “identify those jurors who are especially likely to believe that the death penalty should be automatic for terrorism-murders, or for murderers of children or police officers.”
Tsarnaev could face the death penalty if convicted.
On the night of the Boston Marathon attacks, Tamerlan Tsarnaev watched his handiwork on television—and laughed.
It was the evening of April 15, 2013, and Tamerlan Tsarnaev was a happy man. At a messy, third-floor apartment on Norfolk Street in Cambridge, the 26-year-old was in his living room alongside his brother, Dzhokhar, 19, watching the news on TV. Nearly every channel was running nonstop coverage of the chaos and carnage on Boylston Street: the smoke, the screaming, the severed limbs scattered in the street. Blood was everywhere. In the apartment, a laptop streaming CNN also played the endless chaos and heroic rescue efforts. Spectators used their belts, shirts, and shoelaces as tourniquets to tie off the mangled limbs of strangers; doctors who ran the marathon sprinted to operating rooms; former New England Patriots offensive lineman Joe Andruzzi carried an injured woman to safety. Read More
By Michele McPhee – Boston
October 16, 2014
Two-time former Massachusetts Governor and 1988 Democratic Presidential candidate Mike Dukakis was a surprise witness in the obstruction trial for a college friend of the accused marathon bomber.
Dukakis testified that his wife Kitty, a social worker, was a friend of the family of Robel Phillipos, 20, who, according to court testimony, was the last man to see Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on April 18, the day the FBI released photographs of the suspected bombers.
The men in those photos, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan allegedly went on a deadly crime spree that same night, executing a police officer on the campus of MIT and engaging police in a bomb and bullet battle in Watertown.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, was killed in the firefight and Dzhokhar fled, and became the subject of a 20-hour police manhunt that ended on April 19 when he was found on a trailered boat in a Watertown backyard.
Phillipos and two other friends, Dias Kadrybayev and Azamat Tazhayakov, were arrested by the FBI a day later on charges that shortly before the officer’s murder the three fellow UMass/Dartmouth students were in the suspected bomber’s dorm room disposing of evidence.
Phillipos cried as Dukakis described for the court knowing him since he was a little boy, “We’ve certainly watched him grow up.” Dukakis said that days after Phillipos was arrested his mother called him for help and he met with Robel to discuss his interviews with the FBI.
"He said, 'I was so confused, I don't know what I told them,'" Dukakis said.
After he was done testifying, Dukakis said outside the courthouse that he “was appalled” by the bombings both as a marathon runner and as the former governor who had crowned the winners in the women’s race. Still, Dukakis said, he believes that Phillipos is innocent of the federal charges, saying he was just a teenager that smoked too much marijuana and didn’t intentionally lie to the FBI during several interviews as prosecutors have charged.
Tazhayakov was found guilty of obstruction charges in June and testified for the prosecution against Phillipos this month, telling the court that his friend knew that there had been a backpack containing spent fireworks and a laptop removed from the dorm room. Kadrybayev pleaded guilty in August.
Tsarnaev is slated to go on trial Jan. 5, 2015.
By Michele McPhee - Boston
October 12, 2014
Defense attorneys for accused marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev said a witness is prepared to testify for the prosecution that their client knew his older brother was behind the gruesome near-beheadings of three men slain on the ten-year-anniversary of 9/11.
One of the murdered men, Brendan Mess, was referred to by Tamerlan Tsarnaev as “his only American friend,” and was one of three mixed martial arts fighters found in a blood-splattered crime scene with their throats slashed, their bodies sprinkled with marijuana.
Four days after the marathon attack, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, was killed during a shootout with police. His DNA was then matched to evidence recovered in Mess’ Waltham apartment, law enforcement sources said. Read More
Ailina Tsarnaeva held in jail after she cannot post $5000 bail.
September 30, 2014
By Michele McPhee
The sister of the man accused of planting explosives at the Boston Marathon pleaded not guilty in a Manhattan courtroom today to charges that she threatened to blow up her husband’s ex-girlfriend’s home.
Ailina Tsarnaeva, 24, was arraigned on two counts of misdemeanor aggravated harassment stemming from the accusation that she threatened a Harlem woman last month with: "Leave my man alone. I have people. I know people that can put a bomb on you."
NYPD detectives contacted Tsarnaeva after the call was allegedly made on Aug. 25 and she turned herself into the 30th Precinct that afternoon. Later that same day Tsarnaeva allegedly drove past the victim’s home, Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Abreu told the court, which made her take the threat seriously.
"She has two relatives involved in the Boston Marathon bombings,'' Abreu said. The victim, Abreu added, "has seen the defendant driving in her neighborhood since."
Tsarnaeva lives in North Bergen, NJ with her sister Bella and her sister-in-law Katherine Russell aka Karima Tsarnaeva, the widow of her brother Tamerlan. Tamerlan, 26, was killed in a shootout with police four days after he and Dzhokhar allegedly detonated two pressure cooker bombs along the Finish Line of 2013 Boston Marathon, killing three and wounding another 260, with 16 of those victims losing limbs.
Dzhokhar has been held without bail since he was captured on a drydocked boat where prosecutors said he scrawled an anti-American screed. A photo of the bullet-scarred, blood-stained note was exclusively obtained by ABC News.
Abreu cited Tsarnaeva's criminal history, which includes charges that she did not show up in court for hearings on two separate criminal cases in Massachusetts, when asking for the $5000 bail. Tsarnaeva is slated to go on trial Nov. 4 in a South Boston court in connection with charges that she repeatedly lied to police in connection with a counterfeit money case.
"She has an inability to follow court rules,'' Abreu said.
Tsarnaeva's lawyer Susan Marcus told the court that her client denies the charges and s a "easy target" because of the accusations against her brothers and described the man at the center of the dispute, George Briones, the father of her five-month old baby girl, as her husband. Tsarnaeva appeared in court in a tan hijab festooned with black flowers and a black burka robe.
"She strongly disputes that the statements were made,'' Marcus said.
Briones, who Marcus told the court is in a custody battle with his ex-girlfriend concerning their three children, eft without commenting, carrying his wife’s Burberry purse. Tsarnaeva also has a five-year-old son, her attorney said, with her first husband.
She was held in jail today, unable to immediately post bail.
By Michele McPhee – Boston
Prosecutors want accused marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to appear in court for his next hearing, telling the court, “We haven’t seen him since the arraignment."
Assistant United States Attorney William Weinreb asked a federal judge to compel Tsarnaev to appear at a scheduled status conference hearing on Oct. 20, - the last before his trial is slated to begin on Nov. 3 - but US District Court Judge George O'Toole said the decision belongs to the defendant.
Tsarnaev, now 21, has waived his appearances in court since his arraignment on July 10, 2013 on terrorism and murder charges contained in a 73-page federal indictment. Prosecutors said Tsarnaev and his brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, detonated two pressure cooker bombs along the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three and wounding another 260 others.
He has been held without bail at a federal prison in the Fort Devens military facility since his capture on a dry-docked boat April 19, four days after the blasts and hours after he and his brother allegedly murdered MIT Police Officer Sean Collier and engaged police in a wild firefight in Watertown where Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed. Tsarnaev allegedly wrote and anti-American missive on the boat.
Bombing victim Marc Fucarile, a firefighter who lost a leg and suffered permanent hearing loss in the blasts, said he wants to see Tsarnaev in court. “I’d like to see him have to face us and see us. That’s why I come. So he has to face what he did.”
“He’s a coward,’’ Fucarile said, adding that after the bombs exploded, killing an 8-year-old boy and two young women, Tsarnaev allegedly fled the carnage. “He walked away. If he was a real man he would have stayed there.”
Today’s hearing was scheduled to discuss a request by defense attorneys that Tsarnaev’s trial be delayed, citing the overwhelming evidence in the case.
“This is a case with an enormous amount of evidence that has been produced by the government,’’ defense attorney David Bruck told the court. “Their goal is to show he self- radicalized as an isolated individual all by himself. That’s their case for the death penalty.”
Prosecutors told the court that the case would be tried with "basic forensic evidence that links the defendant to the crime."
Defense is also arguing that Tsarnaev cannot get a fair trial in Boston and want the court to grant a change of venue.
O’Toole told the court he would decide on those matters in writing “shortly.”
By Michele McPheee - Boston
A war of words has erupted between federal prosecutors and attorneys for the accused Boston Marathon bomber over a trip three members of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's defense team took to Russia, during which, officials in that country said, they lied about the purpose of their visit.
Last week prosecutors told the court in a brief that Russian officials had "expelled" Tsarnaev's lawyers and had accused them of posing as FBI agents as they sought information about a six-month trip their client's brother Tamerlan took to Dagestan in 2012. Tsarnaev, 26, was killed during a shootout with police days after prosecutors said he and his brother detonated two deadly bombs along the finish line, killing three and injuring another 260 spectators.
But defense attorneys vehemently denied what they called "absurd" and "false allegations," writing: "Let us be clear: at no time have members of the defense team misrepresented themselves or lied about their work."
There was no explanation in the defense team's brief of why they were asked by the Russian government to leave the country, as prosecutors claimed in its brief, or if in fact they claimed "tourism" was the purpose of the visit.
"He [Tsarnaev] apparently does not deny the Russian government’s report that three defense team members carried out actions during their stay in Russia that did not match their indicated purpose of visit to Russia,” i.e. “tourism,” and therefore were...expelled,'' United States Attorney Carmen Ortiz wrote in a brief filed today.
Prosecutors said that the allegation came from " an official communication from the Russian government relating the basis for administrative action taken against U.S. citizens."
Defense attorneys want the court to delay Tsarnaev's trial, slated to begin November 3. Prosecutors said that the defense has had ample time to prepare. However both sides did agree in court filings on Friday that 2,000 potential jurors should be called for the selection process. Twelve jurors and six alternates should be seated, prosecutors and defense attorneys agreed.
Ahmad Abousamara grew up in a wealthy suburb the son of a once-prominent MGH doctor but fled the country after he was questioned by the FBI. Now, sources say, Abousamra could be part of the computer arm of the ISIS network of terrorists who have taken responsibility for beheading two journalists in as many weeks. Read More
By Michele McPhee - Boston
Ailina Tsarnaeva - the sister of the accused Boston Marathon bomber brothers - was arrested in New York City today for allegedly telling a woman she was arguing with, "I know some people who will put a bomb on you,'' NYPD sources said.
Tsarnaeva, 23, lives in New Jersey her sister Bella and their sister-in-law, Katherine Russell aka Karina Tsarnaeva, the widow of their eldest brother Tamerlan, killed in a shootout with police on Watertown days after the Boston Marathon attacks that killed three and wounded 260 others. More than a dozen of those victims lost limbs.
The Tsarnaeva sisters have visited their younger brother, Dzhokhar, at a Massachusetts prison where he is awaiting trial on terrorism and murder charges, according to court records.
During one such visit Tsarnaev was accused of making a "detrimental" statement in front of a FBI agent monitoring the visit, the court records state.
She turned herself in to the NYPD today, a spokesman confirmed. Tsarnaeva made the threatening call to a Harlem woman on Monday, the ex-girlfriend of the father of her infant.
Tsarnaeva is also slated to go on trial next month in South Boston on charges she intimidated a witness and passed counterfeit money at a Boston Applebees and lied to police repeatedly about it.
Last year Ailina's older sister Bella, was in court on drug charges in New Jersey. Their mother, Zubeidat Tsarnaeva, has an open warrant connected to a shoplifting arrest in Natick but remains in Russia where she has been since she met Tamerlan there in 2012.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's trial is slated to begin in November. He is facing the death penalty.
It has been five months since the owner of D&J Welding dropped two unlicensed workers at a job site where welding torches were used without the required permit. A slag sparked a deadly blaze that killed two Boston firefighters.
Will anyone be charged? Read More
By Michele McPhee
“Yeah, I shot those f…ing cops,’’ ex-con Peter Ladetto blurted to the FBI agents and Maine state troopers on that September day in 1963 when he was captured on a spud farm a week after he murdered one Malden police officer and seriously wounded another.
"If those two cops didn't come in, everything would have been all right,” the six-foot-four, 280 pound ex-con from Cambridge said as he was cuffed, according to court records in his case.
Officer Edward Callahan was shot in the head. The 36-year-old father of two died two days later at Massachusetts General Hospital. His partner, George Hood, was critically wounded but survived.
And Ladetto would become one of the Massachusetts Department of Corrections most notorious inmates. Assaulting guards. Starting riots. Committing sexual assaults on other inmates. Suing the DOC on the taxpayer’s dime.
This week, prison sources confirmed, Ladetto died in prison. He was 77. One correction officer put it this way: “This was one of the biggest scumbags in the prison system. I hope he rots in hell.”
Last year the city of Malden marked the 50-year anniversary of Callahan’s murder by dedicating a street corner to his memory. And the legacy of Callahan civil service that began when his own father William Callahan became a Malden cop not long after he got off the boat from Ireland continues today.
His son Eddie became a Malden cop and proudly wore his father’s badge #57. He was four years old when his father was shot dead and could hear the screams in the street after he had been shot. The city was devastated when Eddie Callahan succumbed to cancer in 1992, and retired badge #57 for good.
Last year Eddie’s nephew joined the Malden force.
Ladetto, on the other hand, came from a bloodline that preferred to create chaos rather than prevent it. Ladetto was notorious by the time he was convicted of first-degree murder in March 1965 and sentenced to life in prison.
He repeatedly appealed his conviction, unsuccessfully. In fact one judge Reginald Lindsey noted in a ruling: “There was overwhelming evidence of malice, most significantly Ladetto’s confession that he deliberately shot the victim through the head while committing the robbery.”
The accused heroin dealer who officials say provided a handgun to the alleged Boston Marathon bombers told police last year that he did drugs himself to cope with his close link to the deadly twin explosions, a police report and law enforcement sources said. Read More
The handgun used by one of the alleged Boston Marathon bombers in a violent firefight with police and to allegedly murder an MIT police officer was given to the Tsarnaev brothers by a local alleged heroin dealer who was taken into custody late Monday, several law enforcement sources told ABC News. Read More
FBI Cleared Tamerlan Tsarnaev Months Before Troubling Photo
By MICHELE McPHEE
Months before the 2013 terror attack on the Boston Marathon, accused bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev posed in front of a black flag often associated with jihad with a fellow worshiper at a Boston-area mosque, according to an FBI report obtained by ABC News.
The FBI report, which did not include the photo, describes Tsarnaev and his friend Khairullozhon Matanov as “seated in front of a black flag with a sword and a shadada phrase,” referring to the Muslim statement of faith, and adds that the photo was taken “at the mosque.” Similar flags have become symbols of jihad, used by al Qaeda and al Qaeda-linked extremist groups. Read More
A man who claims he is the best counterfeiter in the world, Frank Bourassa, has been allowed to go free after turning over a huge quantity of fake U.S. $20 bills that authorities say are “not detectable by the naked eye.”
Bourassa, a resident of Trois Rivieres outside Montreal, Canada, spent only a month and a half in jail and Canadian authorities agreed earlier this year that they would not extradite him to the United States for prosecution. Read More
There is something wrong with the image that accompanies this story. Of the two $20 bills shown, one of them is fake. Can you tell which? Read More
A Quincy cab driver who celebrated the marathon bombings by buying accused terrorists Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev dinner hours after the attacks on April 15, 2013 has been arrested on federal obstruction charges, prosecutors said.
Khairullozhon Matanov, 23, was arrested this morning ad charged with obstructing the Boston Marathon investigation. Matanov befriended the Tsarnaev brothers at a Cambridge mosque and climbed Mount Washington in New Hampshire to praise the mujahideen, according to a federal indictment. Read More
ABC News has previously reported Tsarnaev wrote an anti-American message on the boat, called the Slip Away II, in which he hid during the massive manhunt last April. Law enforcement sources previously said that the message also included the phrase “F*** America”. That portion of the message was not included in the image obtained by ABC News. This week law enforcement sources said Dzhokhar also lamented elsewhere in the note that his brother was able to meet Allah first.
David Bruck, a member of Tsarnaev’s defense team, had no comment when he was shown the photograph Wednesday. In a pre-trial hearing Wednesday he repeated arguments made in court filings that Tamerlan was ultimately responsible for last year’s terror attacks. Previous filings indicated the defense may argue in Dzhokhar’s November trial that the 19-year-old was only doing his older brothers’ bidding. Read More
BOSTON April 4, 2014
By Michele McPhee – Boston
The deadly Back Bay blaze that killed two veteran firefighters last week was started when sparks from a welder’s torch were blown into clapboards of 298 Beacon Street, Boston Fire Commissioner John Hassan said today at a press conference alongside the Boston Police homicide squad.
“The slag, or sparks, got into under the clapboards,’’ Hassan said at a press conference today, a day after his department endured the agonizing task of burying slain firefighter Mike Kennedy, a combat Marine veteran. On Wednesday Lt. Ed Walsh was laid to rest. Read More