Boston bombing: Life, death and a fair trial

Ahead of the Marathon bombing trial, prosecutors are confident they have a watertight case. But controversy is raging on questions of life, death and fairness. DW explored the arguments with three law professors.

Dzokhar Tsarnaev could face the death penalty
Dzokhar Tsarnaev

The state has repeatedly resisted attempts by death penalty supporters to reintroduce capital punishment. So little wonder that the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) decision to let prosecutors pursue the death penalty in the federal case against Dzokhar Tsarnaev has been controversial.

Within months of the attack, the city’s leading newspaper, the Boston Globe, expressed its opposition in an editorial. It cited a striking opinion poll showing that 57% of Bostonians said they favored life without parole rather than execution, should Tsarnaev be found guilty, with 33% favoring the death penalty. The numbers weren’t just an issue of party allegiance: Republicans – traditionally more supportive of capital punishment – also narrowly backed a life sentence.
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Source News: DW