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Tsarnaev Wipes Eyes as Aunt Weeps at Death Penalty Hearing

By    |   Tuesday, 05 May 2015 06:51 AM

Convicted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev wiped tears from his eyes in a rare show of emotion Monday morning as his aunt testified during the death penalty phase of his trial.

Patimat Suleimanov cried on the stand as she looked at her nephew and started her testimony, according to CNN. Suleimanov became so emotional that U.S. District Judge George O'Toole Jr. suggested the defense call another witness and allow her to compose herself.

Tsarnaev, 21, "dabbed his eyes" during Suleimanov's testimony while the aunt at times cried on the witness stand.

"I categorically reject what he did," Suleimanov said in her testimony. "It's a great tragedy, of course."

Tsarnaev also blew a kiss to relatives after jurors left the courtroom for lunch break as his defense continued their effort to humanize him during the penalty phase, a move they hope will keep him from being sentenced to death, noted the Boston Globe.

Last month, the jury convicted Tsarnaev of 30 federal charges in the bombings, 17 of which carried the possibility of the death penalty.

Relatives blamed Tsarnaev's oldest brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, and his conversion to a radical form of Islam.

"When we were told (Tamerlan Tsarnaev) was an adherent of some sort of radical Islam, I was afraid," Naida Suleimanov, a cousin testified.

The defense showed the jury pictures of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev growing up, noted the Globe.

Relatives described Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as a shy child who could follow his brother's lead in the bombing at the 2013 Boston Marathon which killed three people and injured more than 260 others.

Authorities said the Tsarnaev brothers also killed an MIT police officer along with hurling bombs at other officers in a shootout with law enforcement in Watertown several days after the marathon.

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Convicted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev wiped his eyes of tears in a rare show of emotion Monday morning as an aunt testified during the penalty phase of his trial, according to CNN.
tsarnaev, wipes, eyes, aunt, weeps, death, penalty
Tuesday, 05 May 2015 06:51 AM
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