The White House said Monday that the surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon  bombing will not be treated as an enemy combatant, in response to calls from  Republican lawmakers to consider that option for the sake of intelligence  gathering.The announcement came as a federal complaint was filed against suspect  Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Fox News has learned that the suspect made an initial  appearance in front of a federal magistrate judge at the hospital where he is  still being treated. No plea was entered.

The complaint charged Tsarnaev with using a weapon of mass destruction at the  marathon one week ago, an attack that killed three people and injured more than  200. The document authorized the death penalty or life imprisonment to be  sought.

“Although our investigation is ongoing, today’s charges bring a successful  end to a tragic week for the city of Boston, and for our country,” Attorney  General Eric Holder said in a statement.

As the complaint was filed, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney made clear  that the suspect would go through the civilian court system, and would not be  handled as a combatant.

“He will not be treated as an enemy combatant,” Carney said. “We will  prosecute this terrorist through our civilian system of justice.”

Carney stressed that the civilian system has been used to try, convict and  incarcerate “hundreds of terrorists” since the 9/11 attacks, including the Times  Square attempted bomber. “The system has repeatedly proved that it can  successfully handle the threats we continue to face,” he said.

Carney noted U.S. citizens — like Tsarnaev — cannot be tried in military  commissions and stressed that the civilian court system can handle such a  case.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham and other lawmakers, though, were not  suggesting he be tried before a military commission, since U.S. law would not  allow that.

Graham, rather, was suggesting that the administration label him an “enemy  combatant” for purposes of intelligence gathering. Graham conceded it’s not yet  clear whether he could qualify as one — to do so, the government would need to  prove he was linked to Al Qaeda or an Al Qaeda-linked group.

Officials have cited a public safety exemption in declining to read Tsarnaev  his Miranda rights initially. But that exemption only lasts for 48 hours, and  Graham had suggested President Obama consider designating him a combatant while  they interrogate him for up to roughly 30 days.

New York Republican Rep. Peter King, among the first to call for Tsarnaev to  be handled as a potential enemy combatant, stood by that position on “Fox News  Sunday.” He, too, agreed that the suspect could be tried and convicted in  federal court.

“He’s going to be convicted,” King said. “I’m not worried about a conviction.  I want the intelligence.”

The complaint released Monday meticulously detailed how the suspects came to  the attention of law enforcement. The document says that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev could  be seen in surveillance footage lifting his cell phone to his ear 30 seconds  before the first explosion. As others stared at the blast “in apparent  bewilderment and alarm,” the document says, the suspect “appears  calm.”

The document said the FBI later seized “a large pyrotechnic” from his room,  as well as a jacket and hat similar to those worn by the bomber in the  footage.

The complaint also claimed the two alleged bombers were the ones who  carjacked an individual on April 18. According to the document, one of the  carjackers pointed a gun at the victim and said, “Did you hear about the Boston  explosion? … I did that.”

“The man removed the magazine from his gun and showed the victim that it had  a bullet in it, and then re-inserted the magazine. The man then stated, ‘I am  serious,'” the complaint said.

The suspect, meanwhile, reportedly has been communicating in writing. Federal  investigators also want to speak with the widow of the elder brother, Tamerlan,  according to her attorney. Lawyer Amato DeLuca told The Associated Press that,  after investigators went to her Rhode Island home Sunday, the widow did not  speak with them.

“We’re deciding what we want to do and how we want to approach this,” she  said.



2 thoughts on “Boston bombing suspect charged, will not be treated as enemy combatant

  1. What are the guidelines to classify as enemy combatant? That would be my question. I not sure what it means. I certainly understand the results we need would be better obtained under that classification but, do we need to know before hind if he is tied to an international group to classify him as such?
    Thankfully we have a merciful God because that fruit is not permeating out of me at this moment!
    Although, I am almost afraid to say publicly after such horrific acts that I do feel compassion and sadness directed at his being for this and only this— that such an intelligent mind would be corrupted and distorted from evil and for the loss of the good he could have contributed to our society.
    Hopefully good will come from our holding him and he will be persuaded to share information to help our Nation avoid further acts of terror. Other than that, he is just using up tax money to house him.

    1. Excellent question, Denise! You can google it and find out more than I am about to tell you, I am sure, but I do want to give the explanation, AS I UNDERSTAND IT! He became a U.S. citizen last year. It is my understanding, that since he is a U.S. citizen, he does not have to be tried as a “terrorist” before a military commission. His trial will be held in a federal court. Certain ones wanted him tried as an enemy combatant for the purpose per the article, “Graham, rather, was suggesting that the administration label him an “enemy combatant” for purposes of intelligence gathering. Graham conceded it’s not yet clear whether he could qualify as one — to do so, the government would need to prove he was linked to Al Qaeda or an Al Qaeda-linked group.” Check me out on this though and if anyone can explain it better, please do!

God bless you! I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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