Latest on Boston trial: Bomber blows kiss to family in court

AP News
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Posted: May 04, 2015 1:34 PM

1:30 p.m.

Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv) has blown a kiss to his relatives as U.S. Marshals led him out of the courtroom.

Five of Tsarnaev's family members from Russia are expected to take the witness stand in the penalty phase of his federal trial.

Tsarnaev has been convicted of all 30 charges against him, including 17 that carry the possibility of the death penalty. He is now on trial for his life. The same jury that convicted him will soon decide whether to sentence him to life in prison or to death.

Tsarnaev blew a kiss as the court broke for lunch Monday afternoon. Earlier, Tsarnaev cried as his aunt took the stand about 10 feet away from him. He wiped tears from his face with a tissue.

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11:50 a.m.

Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv) has shown emotion for the first time in his federal death penalty trial, crying as his aunt took the stand and wiping his eyes repeatedly with a tissue.

Patimat Suleimanova sobbed uncontrollably Monday as she looked at Dzhokhar sitting about 10 feet away from her. She hadn't yet begun to testify and had only answered questions about her name, her year of birth and where she was born.

After a few minutes, Judge George O'Toole Jr. suggested that the defense call a different witness so she could compose herself.

As she left the witness stand, sobbing loudly, Tsarnaev wiped tears from his face, using a tissue to wipe his eyes and nose.

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10:45 a.m.

A prosecutor has asked a cousin of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv) if she believes that bombing innocent people is an act of kindness.

The question by prosecutor William Weinreb came Monday during cross-examination of Raisat Suleimanova in Tsarnaev's death penalty trial. The cousin testified through a Russian translator.

Suleimanova had testified earlier to questions from the defense that Tsarnaev was a kind and warm child who brought out the kindness in others.

She also said Tsarnaev was so gentle that he cried while watching "The Lion King" with his aunt.

Tsarnaev's lawyer objected to Weinreb's question to the cousin, and she was not allowed to answer.

Three people were killed and more than 260 others were injured when twin bombs exploded at the 2013 marathon.

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10:10 a.m.

A cousin of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv) says she traveled from Russia to testify in his federal death penalty trial because she loves him very much.

Raisat Suleimanova is Tsarnaev's first cousin. She testified Monday that Tsarnaev was a kind and warm child.

She says, "I think that his kindness made everybody around him kind."

She says she "categorically" rejects what he did, but he is part of the family.

The 21-year-old Tsarnaev is accused along with his late brother of planting pressure-cooker bombs near the finish line of the 2013 marathon. Three people were killed and more than 260 were injured.

He was convicted last month of all the charges against him. The same jury will soon decide whether he is to be executed.