BOSTON, Massachusetts – The conundrum over what to do with the body of alleged Boston marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev grew Monday as authorities in his home city said they did not want him buried there.
Meanwhile, a 19-year-old friend of the other accused Boston bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was ordered free on $100,000 bail as he awaits trial for allegedly lying to investigators probing the attack.
He was killed by bullets and blunt trauma, according to the medical report, and was apparently hit by the car driven by his brother Dzhokhar.
Since then, the body of the once promising amateur boxer has been in limbo.
It’s currently at the Graham, Putnam and Mahoney Funeral Parlor in Worcester, a suburb of the greater Boston area. But funeral home director Peter Stefan says he can’t find a cemetery willing to accept Tsarnaev for burial.
Although he was born in the former Soviet Union, Tsarnaev had spent the last decade in Cambridge, also near Boston.
But Cambridge City Manager Robert Healy issued a statement Sunday saying he didn’t want Tsarnaev to lie in rest there.
“The difficult and stressful efforts of the residents of the city of Cambridge to return to a peaceful life would be adversely impacted by the turmoil, protests and wide spread media presence at such an interment,” Healy said.
“I have determined that it is not in the interest of ‘peace within the city’ to execute a cemetery deed for a plot within the Cambridge Cemetery for the body of Tamerlan Tsarnaev,” Healy wrote.
Tsarnaev’s uncle Ruslan Tsarni, who blasted the brothers as “losers” soon after the bombing, traveled with relatives from the state of Maryland Sunday to the funeral home where Tamerlan’s body is being held and prepared it for burial in accordance with Muslim rituals.
He says Cambridge was Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s “home country.”
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick refused to intervene Monday.
“This isn’t a state or a federal issue. It’s the family’s issue. And the family has some options. I assume they will make a decision soon. I hope they do,” he said.
“I think everybody is feeling upset about what happened. But we showed the world in the immediate aftermath of the attacks what a civilization looks like, and I’m proud of what we showed and I think we continue to do that by stepping back and let the family make their decisions.”
Patrick sidestepped a question about whether towns had the right to refuse burial.
“I think, if you’re asking about legal rights and so forth — I don’t know the answer to that,” he said.
The funeral director said it was time to set aside emotions.
“We have to bury this guy. Whatever it is, whoever he is, in this country we bury people,” Stefan told local media on Sunday.
Protesters gathered outside the funeral home over the weekend, waving US flags and clutching signs demanding that Tsarnaev’s body be sent to Russia.