BOSTON (CBS) – Boston Marathon bombing survivors, city and state officials responded after Martin Richard’s parents published an opinion piece in the Boston Globe saying they do not support the death penalty for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who was responsible for killing their son.
Bill and Denise Richard said in their Globe op-ed piece that sentencing Tsarnaev to life for his role in killing their son and three others would only result in a lengthy process that would hinder their ability to move on.
Instead, the Richard family said it would support taking the death penalty off the table in favor of life in prison if Tsarnaev waived his right to appeal.
Marc Fucarile, who lost a leg in the bombings, said in the past that he was in favor of the death penalty. Fucarile did not say Friday if hearing the Richards’ feelings would change his mind.
“I respect the Richards. I have been in close contact with them for a while now and I think they are an amazing family,” said Fucarile. “The strength they have shown and continue to show is incredible. I respect their decision [regarding the death penalty] and I understand exactly where they are coming from.”
Gov. Charlie Baker said that while he supports the death penalty for Tsarnaev, he added that the opinions of the Richard family and other victims’ families are “much more important than mine.”
“Any family that loses someone in a circumstance like that their voice absolutely deserves to be heard and I hope the jury takes their word into consideration,” said Baker. “My personal opinion is that Tsarnaev should receive the death penalty but I also said it’s up to the jury.”
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said the Globe essay by the Richards speaks volumes, especially given how private they have been since the bombings.
“This is their first public statement and it’s a powerful one,” said Walsh. “Bill Richard is a dad who lost his son and he’s doing what a dad is supposed to do. And I support him in that.”