Lawyers cite coverage of Boston Marathon finish line shoveler in request to move Tsarnaev trial
As of last week, lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev had made three attempts to have the trial moved outside of Massachusetts, arguing that a large number of potential jurors were already convinced of Tsarnaev’s guilt. According to WSYX, 68 percent of the 1,373 prospective jurors who filled out questionnaires already believe Tsarnaev is guilty.
That argument didn’t fly, so today Tsarnaev’s legal team tried again, arguing that a photo that went viral of a bartender shoveling snow off of the Boston Marathon finish line was reason enough to move the trial.
The coverage of the man who was inspired to clean off the finish line during this week’s blizzard “aptly symbolizes the unprecedented level of public feeling that still surrounds the Boston Marathon bombing, and that underlies the difficulties that have beset the jury selection process so far,” the attorneys said in a document filed Friday in US District Court in Boston.
A photograph of a mystery man clearing the finish line during the blizzard went viral this week. It turned out to be bartender Christopher Laudani, 25. He said he wasn’t thinking of the terrorist attack, but of the Marathon, which he has run five times himself, including in 2013, when he was near mile 25 when the bombs went off.
“It’s more about the finish line itself, what it represents to me. The love of something that is way bigger than any of us,” he told the Globe.
Something tells us this is a long shot for the defense.
The trial was to begin Monday, January 26 but will have to be delayed as the search for an unbiased jury pool of 70 continues — slowly.