A Massachusetts District Attorney has decided to prosecute Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the convicted Boston Marathon Bomber, for murdering Sean Collier, MIT police officer. DA Marian T. Ryan hopes to also convict Tsarnaev of these additional charges, despite the fact that Tsarnaev has already been sentenced and is facing the death penalty.
Ryan is convinced that a state trial is also required, aside from the federal one, as Tsarnaev’s federal convictions are pending an appeal and may not be final.
Last month, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s trial concluded and the defendant received the death penalty for the 2013 bombings that killed three people and injured over 260 others. However, the additional charges involve the shooting of Sean Collier, MIT police officer, in the days that Dzhokhar and his brother Tamerlan were fleeing the area.
It is still unclear whether the federal government will agree to return Tsarnaev and allow a state trial to be scheduled. Ryan’s office is currently in the process of asking for Tsarnaev’s return, who is currently imprisoned in Florence, Colorado, at the US Penitentiary Administrative Maximum Facility.
This is an unprecedented situation, as there has never been another case of a federally convicted person to stand trial again for state charges. However, the prosecutors from Middlesex are convinced that Tsarnaev should be tried for his actions due to their severity.
According to Ryan, any offender responsible for assaulting and murdering a Middlesex Police County officer while he or she was executing his duties should have to be brought back to Middlesex County to be tried for that particular offence.
If Ryan’s request is granted, Tsarnaev will be facing state charges including carjacking, murder and kidnapping.
Of course, the situation is particularly delicate. In Tsarnaev’s case, a state trial could work as an insurance policy were his appeal to annul his federal conviction. Yet even so, the costs connected to transporting a high-profile prisoner, guarding him, as well as the expenses of a second trial may be too high an expense.
“It becomes a media circus, a security nightmare, and it takes up a lot of expense and the court’s time,” former prosecutor Brian T. Kelly explains.
Even so, it’s understandable that prosecutors would want to hold Tsarnaev accountable for his actions. What remains to be seen is whether Ryan’s request will be granted.
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