Boston accused Tsarnaev ‘manhunt photos’ emerge

Photos were taken when Tsarnaev was captured on April 19th


A police photographer, furious with a Rolling Stone magazine cover photo he says glamorises the surviving Boston Marathon suspect, has released gritty images from the day Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was captured.

The photos released to Boston Magazine by Massachusetts State Police tactical photographer Sgt Sean Murphy show a downcast, dishevelled Tsarnaev with the red dot of a sniper’s rifle laser sight on his forehead.

In a statement to the magazine, Sgt Murphy said Tsarnaev was evil and his photos showed the “real Boston bomber, not someone fluffed and buffed for the cover of Rolling Stone magazine”.

The photos were taken when Tsarnaev was captured on April 19th, bleeding and hiding in a boat in a suburban back garden. The April 15th bombing killed three people and injured more than 260. A police officer was allegedly killed on April 18th by Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan, who died following a shoot-out with police later that evening.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, an ethnic Chechen who came to the US as a child, pleaded not guilty last week while appearing nonchalant. State police spokesman David Procopio said the agency did not authorise the release of the photos to Boston Magazine and would not give them to other media.

“The State Police will have no further comment on this matter tonight,” he added. Boston Magazine printed more than a dozen photos from the day Tsarnaev was captured. Three of the images show Tsarnaev as he emerged from the boat, head bowed, with red smudges and streaks on his clothing and the boat.

Two images show the red dot of the laser sight in the middle of his forehead and just above his left eye. The other show the dot on the top of his head as he buries his face in his arms. Sgt Murphy said in his statement to Boston Magazine that Rolling Stone’s cover photo, a softly-lit image of a brooding Tsarnaev, insulted officers killed in the line of duty, their colleagues and their families by glamorising the “face of terror”.

“It also could be an incentive to those who may be unstable to do something to get their face on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine,” he said.

Rolling Stone has said the cover story on Tsarnaev was part of its “long-standing commitment to serious and thoughtful coverage of the most important political and cultural issues of our day”.

In his statement, Sgt Murphy said the capture of Tsarnaev played out like a television show, but he hoped his photos showed it was “as real as it gets”. “These were real people, with real lives, with real families,” he said. “And to have this cover dropped into Boston was hurtful to their memories and their families. “There is nothing glamorous in bringing more pain to a grieving family.”