‘Prolongs the nightmare’: Boston Marathon bombing victims react to court’s decision to overturn Tsarnaev’s death sentence

BOSTON (WHDH) - One victim of the Boston Marathon bombing said that a federal appeals court decision to throw out Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s death sentence just “prolongs the nightmare” she has been living with ever since she was injured at the finish line on Boylston Street.

READFull court decision on Tsarnaev appeal

“So people are sitting on death row for far less, and the US Appeals court chooses to overturn the sentence of this COWARD??! All this does is give him the attention he wants, and prolongs the nightmare we have been living the last SEVEN years. Disgusting,” Rebekah Gregory said in a tweet.

A three-judge panel of the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday ordered a new penalty-phase trial on whether the 27-year-old Tsarnaev should be executed for the attack that killed three people and wounded more than 260 others on April 15, 2013.

In the ruling, the judges stated, “Dzhokhar will spend his remaining days locked up in prison, with the only matter remaining being whether he will die by execution.”

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Jeff Bauman, a bombing survivor who provided investigators with a suspect description that eventually led police to the Tsarnaev brothers, said in a statement, “I have no problem with him spending the rest of his sorry life in a supermax in Colorado.”

Dic Donahue, an MBTA police officer who was critically injured in a shootout with the Tsarnaevs in Watertown days after the attack, said he was expecting the ruling.

“I’ve been expecting this since the trial and the initial appeal. And in any case, he won’t be getting out and hasn’t been able to harm anyone since he was captured,” he said in a tweet.

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Tsarnaev’s lawyers had argued that intense media coverage had made it impossible to have a fair trial in Boston.

They also pointed to social media posts from two jurors suggesting they harbored strong opinions even before the 2015 trial started.

It’s unclear when a new penalty-phase trial for Tsarnaev will happen but United States Marshals would have to bring the convicted killer back to Boston.

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