Belfast Telegraph

Monday 15 September 2014

Boston Marathon bombings: Tamerlan Tsarnaev's American wife Katherine Russell learned he was wanted from TV

Federal authorities have asked to speak to Katherine Russell Tsarnaev the wife of Boston Marathon bomb suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

Her lawyer Amato DeLuca said his client did not suspect her husband of anything, but had not seen much of him in recent days as she was working long hours while he cared for their toddler daughter.

Mr DeLuca also offered new details of Tsarneav's movements in the days after the bombings, saying "he was home" when his wife left for work on the last day she saw him alive.

Ms Russell Tsarnaev, a young American woman from a comfortable middle-class background who converted to Islam after she met Tamerlan,  learned her husband was a suspect by seeing it on TV, Mr DeLuca said.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, and his brother, Dzhokhar, 19, two ethnic Chechen brothers from southern Russia, are accused of planting two bombs near the marathon finish line last Monday, killing three and injuring more than 180.

Their motive remains unclear.

Ms Russell Tsarnaev did not speak to federal officials who went last night to her parents' home, where she has been staying since her husband was killed during a getaway attempt on Friday.

Mr DeLuca said he spoke with the federal officials, but he would not offer further details.

"We're deciding what we want to do and how we want to approach this," he said.

When asked whether anything seemed amiss to the wife following the bombings, Mr DeLuca said: "Not as far as I know."

Mr DeLuca said his client did not suspect her husband of anything. He said she had been working 70 to 80 hours, seven days a week as a home health care aide. While she was at work, her husband cared for their toddler daughter, Mr DeLuca said.

"When this allegedly was going on, she was working, and had been working all week to support her family," he said.

He said Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was off at college and she saw him "not at all" at the apartment they shared.

Ms Russell Tsarnaev was attending university in Boston when friends introduced her to her future husband at a nightclub, Mr DeLuca said.

They dated on and off, then married in 2009 or 2010, he said.

She was raised Christian, but at some point after meeting Tamerlan Tsarnaev, she converted to Islam, he said.

When asked why she converted, he said: "She believes in the tenets of Islam and of the Koran. She believes in God."

She had a comfortable middle-class upbringing. Her parents, a doctor and a nurse, live in a detached house in North Kingstown, an attractive and well-to-do town in Rhode Island south of Boston.

She was seen collecting belongings from the house at the weekend, wearing a headscarf and sunglasses.

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