The warden of a federal penitentiary where Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev would likely go if he’s sentenced to life in prison has testified that inmates there can earn a college degree, write a book, and send and receive an unlimited number of letters.
John Oliver was called to the stand Monday as a rebuttal witness after the defense rested in the penalty phase of Tsarnaev’s trial.
Oliver detailed a list of privileges Tsarnaev would have in the Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado, to counter an austere description given by a prison consultant who testified for the defense last week.
The consultant testified that inmates in a special security unit where Tsarnaev would likely be housed are locked in their cells for 23 hours a day.
Lawyers for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR’ tsahr-NEYE’-ehv) have rested their case to a jury that will decide whether he should be put to death for the Boston Marathon bombing.
Tsarnaev’s lawyers wrapped up their case for life Monday after calling more than 40 witnesses in the penalty phase of his trial. His teachers recalled a sweet, hardworking boy. His Russian relatives wept as they described a kind child with an infectious smile.
The defense argued that his late older brother was the mastermind of the bombings and lured then-19-year-old Dzhokhar into his plan. Three people were killed and more than 260 were injured when bombs exploded near the marathon finish line April 15, 2013.
Prosecutors portrayed Tsarnaev as a heartless terrorist who placed a bomb behind children, killing an 8-year-old boy.
A death penalty opponent made famous in the 1995 movie “Dead Man Walking” says Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR’ tsahr-NEYE’-ehv) expressed genuine sorrow for the victims of the attacks.
Sister Helen Prejean testified Monday that she began meeting with Tsarnaev in early March at the request of his defense team.
She says she asked him how he felt about what happened to the victims of the bombing. She says he said, “No one deserves to suffer like they did.”
Tsarnaev’s lawyer asked Prejean what she noticed about his voice when he said the victims didn’t deserve to suffer.
Prejean says his voice had pain in it and she believes he was genuinely sorry for what he did.
Prejean is the last witness for the defense.
A death penalty opponent made famous in the 1995 movie “Dead Man Walking” has been called to the stand in the Boston Marathon bombing case to testify for the defense.
Sister Helen Prejean took the stand Monday in the federal death penalty trial of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR’ tsahr-NEYE’-ehv). The judge allowed her to testify despite prosecutors’ objections.
She is a well-known spiritual adviser who wants to abolish the death penalty.
Prejean wrote a best-selling book called “Dead Man Walking.” The book was made into a movie starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn.
Defense lawyers have said Prejean will be one of their last witnesses before they rest their case in the penalty phase of the trial. A jury will soon decide whether Tsarnaev should be executed