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Boston bombing suspect charged, could face death penalty

  • FILE - This file photo provided Friday, April 19, 2013 by the Federal Bureau of Investigation shows Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. A court official says Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving suspect in the bombings, is facing federal charges and has made an initial court appearance in his hospital room, Monday, April 22, 2013. (AP Photo/Federal Bureau of Investigation, File)

BOSTON (AP) — Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was charged in his hospital room Monday with using a weapon of mass destruction to kill, and he could get the death penalty.

Tsarnaev, 19, was accused by federal prosecutors of joining with his older brother to set off the two pressure-cooker bombs that sprayed shrapnel into the crowd at the finish line last Monday, killing three people and wounding more than 180.

The criminal complaint containing the charges shed no light on the motive for the attack.

Tsarnaev was listed in serious but stable condition at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, unable to speak because of a gunshot wound to the throat. His brother, Tamerlan, 26, died last week in a fierce gunbattle with police.

"Although our investigation is ongoing, today's charges bring a successful end to a tragic week for the city of Boston and for our country," Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement.

The charges carry the death penalty or a prison sentence of up to life.

"He has what's coming to him," a wounded Kaitlynn Cates said from her hospital room. She was at the finish line when the first blast knocked her off her feet, and she suffered an injury to her lower leg.

In outlining the evidence against him in court papers, the FBI said Tsarnaev was seen on surveillance cameras putting a knapsack down on the ground near the site of the second blast and then manipulating a cellphone and lifting it to his ear.

Seconds later, the first explosion went off about a block down the street and spread fear and confusion through the crowd. But Tsarnaev — unlike nearly everyone around him — looked calm and quickly walked away, the FBI said.

Just 10 seconds or so later, the second blast occurred where he had left the knapsack, the FBI said.


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