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Local News

April 22, 2013

UPDATE: Bombing suspect charged, could face death penalty

(Continued)

Tsarnaev was charged with using and conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction against persons and property, resulting in death. He is also likely to face state charges in connection with the shooting death of MIT police officer and Salem State University graduate Sean Collier.

The Obama administration said it had no choice but to prosecute Tsarnaev in the federal court system. Some politicians had suggested he be tried as an enemy combatant in front of a military tribunal, where defendants are denied some of the usual U.S. constitutional protections.

But Tsarnaev is a naturalized U.S. citizen, and under U.S. law, American citizens cannot be tried by military tribunals, White House spokesman Jay Carney said. Carney said that since the Sept. 11 attacks, the federal court system has been used to convict and incarcerate hundreds of terrorists.

In its criminal complaint, the FBI said it searched Tsarnaev's dorm room at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth yesterday and found BBs as well as a white hat and dark jacket that look like those worn by one of one of the suspected bombers in the surveillance photos the FBI released a few days after the attack.

Seven days after the bombings, meanwhile, Boston was bustling, with runners hitting the pavement, children walking to school and enough cars clogging the streets to make the morning commute feel almost back to normal.

Residents paused in the afternoon to observe a moment of silence at 2:50 p.m., the time of the first blast. Church bells tolled across the city and state in tribute to the victims.

Also, hundreds of family and friends packed a church in Medford for the funeral of bombing victim Krystle Campbell, a 29-year-old restaurant worker. A memorial service was scheduled for tonight at Boston University for 23-year-old Lu Lingzi, a graduate student from China.

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