The Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear a government appeal to reinstate the death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who was convicted in 2013.
In July, the federal appeals court in Boston threw out Tsarnaev’s sentence because it said the judge at his trial did not do enough to ensure the jury would not be biased against him.
Then-Attorney General William Barr promised to appeal the decision and the Justice Department followed through in October. The appeals court ordered a new trial to determine whether Tsarnaev should be executed for the 2013 attack.
If the justices overturn the appeals court, Tsarnaev’s death sentence could be reinstated.
Reinstating the death sentence in Tsarnaev’s case could put the Biden administration in a tough spot since President Biden vowed to end the death penalty during his campaign.
The case will not be heard until the fall.
Tsarnaev and his older brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, planted two pressure-cooker bombs near the finish line of the marathon that killed three people and seriously injured more than 250 others. Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed during a shootout.
Tsarnaev was convicted of all 30 charges against him, including conspiracy and use of a weapon of mass destruction and the killing of a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer. Tsarnaev is currently in federal prison in Colorado.
Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy
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Army’s First Trans Officer Indicted for Spying for Russia
The U.S. Army’s first transgender officer and his wife, a Maryland doctor, are making headlines. No, not for breaking any ideological woke barriers; for “allegedly attempting to transfer confidential military medical information to Russia.”
The two were charged in an eight-count indictment on conspiracy charges Wednesday. Major Jamie Lee Henry, who lived with his anesthesiologist wife Anna Gabrielian, was granted his request to officially change his name in accordance with his gender preference in 2015.
Henry and Gabrielian allegedly volunteered to “retrieve private medical records from the United States Army and Johns Hopkins in order to assist the Russian government.”
National Review reports:
The pair are accused of stealing patient health files from Johns Hopkins and Fort Bragg and giving them to an individual they believed to be working for the Russian government. They aimed to show that they could access classified information and readily provide it to Moscow to demonstrate their allegiance, according to the indictment.
However, the individual to whom they hoped to deliver the information was an undercover FBI agent. At a covert August 17 meeting, Gabrielian told the agent that she was devoted to helping Russia’s cause even if it cost her her job or landed her in prison. She arranged a subsequent meeting with Henry and the agent, still believing him to be affiliated with the Kremlin.
That evening, in the agent’s hotel room, Henry expressed that he was committed to supporting Russia and had considered enlisting in the Russian army after the invasion of Ukraine. However, he told the agent he was disqualified because he didn’t have any “combat experience.”
“The way I am viewing what is going on in Ukraine now, is that the United States is using Ukrainians as a proxy for their own hatred toward Russia,” Henry reportedly told the agent.
“Prior to Henry’s case, identifying as a sex different than the one on one’s birth certificate made a soldier unfit for military service, warranting discharge” writes National Review.
Gabrielian worked at the Johns Hopkins school of medicine, and Henry worked as a staff internist stationed at Fort Bragg.
If convicted, the two could face up to five years in federal prison for the conspiracy charge, and a maximum of ten years in federal prison for each count of publishing secret military medical records.
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