Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to Appear in Court

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev will face the families of victims in his court appearance on Wednesday.

In this undated photo provided by Robin Young, Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev poses for a photo after graduating from Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School. Tsarnaev is the surviving suspect in the marathon bombings.

Surviving Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev poses for a photo after graduating from Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School.

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The alleged Boston Marathon bomber will face the families of victims as he appears in court for the first time on Wednesday.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has been charged with using weapons of mass destruction to kill three people – Martin Richard, 8, Krystle Marie Campbell, 29, and Lingzi Lu, 23 – and injured more than 260 others. Tsarnaev is also accused of fatally shooting Sean Collier, a police officer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

His arraignment will be in a federal court in Boston Wednesday afternoon and he is expected to enter a plea at that time.

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Tsarnaev, 19, and his older brother, Tamerlan – who was killed in a shootout with police three days after the bombing – allegedly devised a plan to set off two blasts near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on April 15.

Tsarnaev, a former student at the University of Massachusetts—Dartmouth, was found hiding in a boat in Watertown on April 19. He was seriously injured from the shootout the day before and had his first court hearing in a hospital while he was recovering.

Of the 30 federal criminal charges Tsarnaev faces, 17 carry the possibility of the death penalty, while the others may result in life in prison, The Boston Globe reports.

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Authorities have argued that the brothers were influenced by al-Qaida publications to build the two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) out of pressure cookers. Tsarnaev also left a confession in the boat where he was discovered, saying the attacks were justified as payback for U.S. military action in Muslim countries.

He wrote the U.S. government was "killing our innocent civilians," according to the indictment against Tsarnaev.

"I can't stand to see such evil go unpunished," he wrote. "We Muslims are one body, you hurt one you hurt us all."

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Many family members of the bombing victims are expected to attend the hearing on Wednesday.

Liz Norden, whose sons each lost a leg in the explosions, told ABC News she is attending the proceeding because she wants to stare down "the face of evil."

"It has been incredibly hard to accept what happened to my boys," she said. "I'm angry. I want to be there."

The hearing is expected to begin around 3:30 p.m. EDT and will be under high security. Deputies from the U.S. Marshals Service will bring Tsarnaev to the courtroom from a locked medical facility where he has been detained, The Boston Globe reported.

 

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