Case Summary: United States v. Tsarnaev (High School Level)

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This high-profile case will decide whether the death sentences of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev can be reinstated. The case focuses on Tsarnaev's right to an impartial jury and to have mitigating factors considered in sentencing.

Case issues: 

  1. Did the U.S. Court of Appeals err when it vacated (dismissed) Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's death sentences on the ground that the District Court during voir dire did not ask each prospective juror for a specific accounting of the pretrial media coverage that they had read heard or seen about Tsarnaev's case?
  2. Did the U.S. Court of Appeals err in concluding that the District Court should have admitted evidence at the sentencing phase of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's trial that Tsarnaev's older brother, Tamerlan, was allegedly involved in different crimes two years before the offenses for which Tsarnaev was convicted?

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