BOSTON (Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Thursday denied a request by lawyers for the accused Boston Marathon bomber to hold a hearing on their request to move the trial out of the city where the attack occurred, saying he would decide based on prior court filings.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 21, could face execution if he is convicted of killing three people and injuring more than 260 with a pair of homemade pressure-cooker bombs on April 15, 2013, and with fatally shooting a university police officer three days later as he and his older brother, Tamerlan, attempted to flee the city.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, died after an overnight gunbattle with police shortly after that shooting. His brother was captured late the following evening following a daylong lockdown of most of the Boston metropolitan area.
Tsarnaev’s attorneys have asked U.S. District Judge George O‘Toole to delay the trial beyond its scheduled November start and to move it out of Boston, saying it would be impossible to find an impartial panel of 12 jurors and six alternates in the city, where a large number of people participate in the world’s longest-running marathon either as spectators or athletes.
O‘Toole said in court papers on Thursday he would rule on the request based on previous motions by prosecutors and defense attorneys.
Reporting by Scott Malone; Editing by Peter Cooney