Year End Update: Tips From Readers and What’s Next for 2017

Thanks to tips from readers, the knit hat mystery is solved, Howie's role in the chain of custody may be clearer, and there is an indication of where the Invisible Person went. Plus, what's coming up next for this blog in 2017.

A Scholar’s Impression of the Tsarnaev Motion to Appoint Counsel on Appeal

On February 17th, Dzhokhar's lawyers filed a motion requesting that appellate counsel be appointed to handle the case going forward. This is big news. While I am at work on my next post, I thought it was worth sharing the impressions of the document written by our contributing death penalty scholar, Margo Schulter. To follow… Continue reading A Scholar’s Impression of the Tsarnaev Motion to Appoint Counsel on Appeal

Appeal Update, Site Changes and What’s Next on the Blog

Hello and happy 2016! I apologize that I'm not coming to you with a new post of case analysis, but there's been some developments in both the case and the blog, so I wanted to address those fairly quickly before moving on. Rest assured I have been hard at work on the research and planning,… Continue reading Appeal Update, Site Changes and What’s Next on the Blog

What’s In an Appeal? The Process in the Tsarnaev Case So Far

  As we near the end of 2015, I must reflect on what a tumultuous year it's been. At this time last year, I saw Dzhokhar's trial approaching like a tidal wave coming from a long way off. A year ago, I still believed in the inherent success of the U.S. justice system. I thought… Continue reading What’s In an Appeal? The Process in the Tsarnaev Case So Far

Further Notes on Dr. Matthew Levitt’s Tsarnaev Trial Testimony: Junk Psychology, Islamophobia, and Bad History, Oh My!

It's time to dive into some court testimony. I can think of no better place to start than with Dr. Matthew Levitt. As you may recall from my previous post, Dr. Levitt was an expert witness called by the government to discuss the “jihadi materials” found on the laptop of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. I have a few… Continue reading Further Notes on Dr. Matthew Levitt’s Tsarnaev Trial Testimony: Junk Psychology, Islamophobia, and Bad History, Oh My!

Junk Psychology and Courtroom Islamophobia: A Breakdown of Motive as Presented in the Tsarnaev Trial

I’ve been thinking a lot about motive lately. When I was in school for creative writing, I was taught all characters need motivation. Without it, they act in wanton and unbelievable fashion, and you will lose your readers because depicted events just won’t feel “real.” That’s the trick to being a good fiction writer: you… Continue reading Junk Psychology and Courtroom Islamophobia: A Breakdown of Motive as Presented in the Tsarnaev Trial

Death Penalty Abolition, Accidental Terrorists, and What’s Next

I cannot stress enough how overjoyed I was at the quantity and quality of responses I received to my previous post about Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and what I observed at his trial. In addition to great reasoned and academic responses, I received a number of links to articles and videos to topics that bear relevance to… Continue reading Death Penalty Abolition, Accidental Terrorists, and What’s Next

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Did Not Get a Fair Trial, and Here’s Why

The verdict is in: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev will die by lethal injection. At twenty-one, he will become the youngest person on death row, sentenced in a state without the death penalty. Even among those directly affected by the Boston Marathon Bombing, there isn't so much a sense of victory as one of unease. In a city… Continue reading Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Did Not Get a Fair Trial, and Here’s Why