Aunt of Suspects: "I'm Suspicious That This Was Staged"

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
April 19 2013 3:55 PM

Aunt of Suspects: "I'm Suspicious That This Was Staged"

Screen shot 2013-04-19 at 2.52.12 PM

Maret Tsarnaeva, the aunt of Boston Marathon bombing suspects Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, spoke at length to the media on Friday from Toronto. And it seems she isn't convinced that her nephews are the Boston Marathon bombers: "I'm suspicious that this was staged," she said, as she asked for more evidence from the FBI. It's a very different response from the brothers' uncle Ruslan Tsarni, who urged the younger of the two, still at large, to turn himself in. 

"We're talking about three dead people, 100-something injured, and I do not believe, I just do not believe our boys would do that," Tsarnaeva told reporters. 


Tsarnaeva, visibly upset and obviously still processing the news, told reporters that Dzhokhar and his parents came to the U.S. in 2002, after which they were granted refugee status. Tamerlan, she says, was a father to a 2-year-old daughter and married to a Christian. (Tamerlan's father said something similar in an interview on Friday.) According to Tsarnaeva, he'd angered his father after dropping out of university. In response to a reporter's question, Tsarnaeva said that the older brother (who is now deceased) had recently become a devout Muslim, which she characterized as him starting to pray five times a day about two years ago. But it should be noted that the aunt doesn't believe her nephew had become an extremist: "He has a wife in Boston and from a Christian family, so you can't tie it to religion," she said. 

**Follow the @slatest team on Twitter, and read more on Slate about the Boston Marathon bombing.**

Abby Ohlheiser is a Slate contributor.



The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers


Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.


The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
Continuously Operating
Oct. 22 2014 2:38 PM Crack Open an Old One A highly unscientific evaluation of Germany’s oldest breweries.
Dear Prudence
Oct. 23 2014 6:00 AM Monster Kids from poorer neighborhoods keep coming to trick-or-treat in mine. Do I have to give them candy?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 22 2014 4:27 PM Three Ways Your Text Messages Change After You Get Married
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
Oct. 22 2014 11:54 PM The Actual World “Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 5:33 PM One More Reason Not to Use PowerPoint: It’s The Gateway for a Serious Windows Vulnerability
  Health & Science
Wild Things
Oct. 22 2014 2:42 PM Orcas, Via Drone, for the First Time Ever
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.