An expert in U.S. burial law said the resistance to Tsarnaev’s burial was unprecedented in a country that has always found a way to put to rest its notorious killers, from Lee Harvey Oswald to Adam Lanza, who gunned down 20 children and six educators at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school last year.
Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, ethnic Chechen brothers from southern Russia and living in Massachusetts, are accused of planting two shrapnel-packed pressure-cooker bombs near the marathon finish line.
Dzhokhar, who was captured hiding in a tarp-covered boat outside a house in Watertown, a Boston suburb, was charged with using a weapon of mass destruction to kill. Their mother has said the charges against them are lies.
In Washington, the first in a series of hearings to review the government’s initial response to the bombing began Thursday.
Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis testified that FBI agents did not tell Boston police they had receiving warnings from Russia’s government in 2011 about Tamerlan Tsarnaev and had performed a cursory investigation.
Davis said none of four people he had assigned to the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force was aware that the FBI investigated the vague warning, found nothing and closed the file.
Davis said he would have liked to have known but conceded that it might not have prevented the attack. The commissioner said his detectives would have wanted to interview Tsarnaev.
“The FBI did that and they closed the case out,” he said. “I can’t say I would’ve come to a different conclusion based on the information at the time.”
The committee chairman, Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, said the hearing will be the first in a series to review the government’s initial response, ask what information authorities received about the brothers before the bombings and whether they handled it correctly.