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Humanity, And Lack Of It

Tsarnaev150423The humanity of victims caring for each other in the middle of the bombing mayhem contrasted with Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s complete disregard and seeming lack of compassion as he just sat there. The last witness to testify yesterday as the government concluded its death penalty case was Steven Woolfenden. Steve was in front of the Forum restaurant with his son Leo in a stroller when the second bomb went off. They were right next to the Richard family as they tried to move away from the first bomb blast. Tsarnaev brushed past Woolfenden after he dropped his bomb and hurried away.

After the blast, Woolfenden, his leg blown off and his son taken to an ambulance, saw Denise Richard bent over her dying son Martin’s eviscerated body. He put a hand on her shoulder. She turned and asked him if he was okay.

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Tsarnaev Death Penalty Trial, Day Two

Tsarnaev150422More heartbreaking testimony today, from the family of MIT officer Sean Collier and Lingzi Lu’s aunt. The jury also heard from two more victims who suffered serious injuries. One, a ballroom dancer who lost a leg, glared at Tsarnaev as she left the witness stand.

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The government also introduced into evidence the video still of Tsarnaev flipping the bird that was shown to the jury during opening statement. That led to the defense getting in the entire video of Tsarnaev in the courthouse holding cell. It shows the defendant primping his hair and mugging for the camera as he first flashes two fingers in a Vee and then the now infamous single digit.Tsarnaev150422

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He’s Starting To Look Like A Monster

 

 

Tsarnaev150421I remember thinking that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev appeared very cocky at his arraignment back in July, 2013. Well, that impression was confirmed today when the prosecution in its opening displayed a photo of Tsarnaev giving the finger to the camera in his holding cell at the courthouse the day of his arraignment.

Tsarnaev150421Assistant U.S. Attorney Nadine Pellegrini displayed the photo of Tsarnaev along side smiling photos of his five dead victims. “This is Dzhokhar Tsarnaev,” she told the jury, “unconcerned, unrepentant and unchanged. Without remorse, he remains untouched by the grief and the loss he caused.”

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Tsarnaev150421The testimony today was painful and heartbreaking. Here are some sketches of the witnesses.

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That Magnificent Man In His Flying Machine

GyrocopterWhen I was a kid I loved to draw flying machines – submarines too – just like the gyrocopter – also called autogyro or gyroplane – that Florida mailman Doug Hughes landed on the west lawn of the Capitol on Wednesday. His flight in the ultralight contraption from Gettysburg to Washington, DC to deliver 535 stamped letters to the members of congress calling for campaign finance reform has inspired tweets calling him a hero.

GyrocopterA slender 61-year old, Hughes appeared before magistrate judge Deborah Robinson in the U.S. Postal uniform he wore for the flight. He wore earphones in the courtroom – usually provided when an interpreter is needed – possibly because of hearing loss after flying two hours with a lawnmower motor strapped to his back. At one point he attempted to speak directly to judge Robinson, but was told to let his lawyer do the talking.

After promising to return to court on May 8, Hughes was allowed to return home to Florida where he will be on home detention.

 

 

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Tsarnaev Guilty On All Thirty Counts

Tsarnaev150408I think it took close to thirty minutes for the court clerk to read all 99 answers on the thirty count verdict form. Enough time for two sketches, though done from a low resolution video monitor in the overflow courtroom since seating in the actual courtroom would have provided only a view of Tsarnaev from the back. Very frustrating.Tsarnaev150408Tsarnaev showed no emotion as the verdict was read. Most of the time he looked down at some papers, occasionally he shifted awkwardly bringing a hand up to his face or slipping it in his pocket for an instant. He has a strange way of movement, especially when he comes into the courtroom, swinging his shoulders up and down, side to side. I guess you’d say he was strutting.Tsarnaev150408

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Three Faces Of Dzhokhar

Tsarnaev150330We only see Tsarnaev from the back when seated in the courtroom, so I did these sketches from the video monitors in the overflow room.

Tsarnaev150330I’ll probably do this same thing when the verdict is announced in order to capture his reaction, or lack of it.

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Deliberations On Tsarnaev’s Guilt Begin

Tsarnaev SketchWith the outcome all but certain the prosecution in the Boston Marathon bombing trial was noticeably relaxed in the courtroom this morning before the jury assembled to begin deliberations.Tsarnaev150407There wasn’t a whole lot to do but wait. Tsarnaev sketchA US marshal, we’ll call him Steve, stood near two large Ellsworth Kelly paintings guarding the entrance to courtroom 9. And I had a chance to finish a little sketch I started on St. Patrick’s day.Tsarnaev sketch

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Tsarnaev Closing Argument Sketches

Tsarnaev150406Prosecutor Aloke Chakravarty gave a powerful closing argument today as the case against Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev goes to the jury after weeks of testimony.Tsarnaev150406

Tsarnaev150406The defense did the best they could, admitting that Dzhokhar planted the bomb at the marathon finish line while shifting most of the blame to his older brother, Tamerlan. But their strategy to save Dzhokhar’s life won’t fully come into play until the case moves into the death-penalty phase.Tsarnaev150406

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Tsarnaev Defense Rests

After a series of bench conferences during which, presumedly, a stipulation was hammered out, the jury was told that one of the victims of the Marathon bombing was a foreign citizen. Then the defense rested after calling just four witnesses.

A forensic computer expert testified that searches relating to the marathon, and Ruger handgun were made on Tamerlan’s Samsung computer, while most of the searches on Dzhokhar’s Vaio computer were related to social media.

An FBI fingerprint analyst, who was originally scheduled to testify for the prosecution but was instead called by the defense, said that the only prints that belonged to Dzhokhar were lifted from a plastic food container filled with explosive, while his brother Tamerlan’s prints were on a transmitter, a pressure cooker lid, a jar of nails, a caulking gun, rolls of duct tape and a soldering iron.

 

 

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Heartbreaking Conclusion To Government’s Case

The last witness called before the government rested its case against Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was the medical examiner who did the autopsy on eight-year-old Martin Richard. Martin’s parents were in the courtroom as the ME held up some of the clothing he was wearing when the bomb ripped his body apart.Also shown to the jury were nails, BB’s and shrapnel that was removed from Martin’s body.

Tsarnaev150330There were other witnesses, and the defense began their case. Here are the rest of today’s sketches.

 

 

 

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