BOSTON (Reuters) - The surviving suspect in last week’s Boston Marathon bombing was moved to a prison medical center outside Boston on Friday, while the body of his older brother who died in a shootout with police remained unclaimed, officials said.
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, a 19-year-old ethnic Chechen charged with the bombing that killed three people and wounded 264, was moved from the hospital where he was kept under guard since he was arrested, badly wounded, a week ago, the U.S. Marshals Service said.
New details emerged on Friday about Dzhokhar and older brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s movements the evening of April 18 after authorities identified the pair publicly in photos as the suspects in the bombing attack.
The Boston Globe published an interview with a 26-year-old Chinese man whose car they hijacked and briefly intended to drive to New York for another bombing before they stopped for gas, allowing their captive to escape.
“I don’t want to die,” the man, who the Globe identified only by his English nickname Danny, recounted as telling them. “I have a lot of dreams that haven’t come true yet.”
He kept the brothers calm by playing up his outsider status although at first they were puzzled by his Chinese accent, the Globe said. After determining that he was Chinese, Tamerlan Tsarnaev identified himself as a Muslim, the newspaper reported.
“Chinese are very friendly to Muslims!” Danny said, according to the Globe. “We are so friendly to Muslims.”
One of the three people who died in the bombing was Chinese, 23-year-old graduate student Lingzi Lu. An 8-year-old boy, Martin Richard, and 29-year-old restaurant manager Krystle Campbell were also killed in the attack.
Danny was put in touch with the Globe by James Alan Fox, a professor of criminology at Northeastern University in Boston, where the man was a student, Fox told Reuters. Fox writes a blog for the Boston Globe website.
The body of 26-year-old Tamerlan Tsarnaev remained unclaimed more than a week following his death in a gunbattle with police in Watertown, Massachusetts, after allegedly shooting dead a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer.
The body remained with the office of Massachusetts’ chief medical examiner, said spokesman Terrel Harris.
His father, Anzor Tsarnaev, told reporters in Russia on Thursday that he intended to travel to Boston to bury his son.
Tsarnaev’s widow, Katherine Russell, retreated to the North Kingstown, Rhode Island home of her parents after the arrest. Her lawyer did not respond to repeated requests for comment on Friday.
Authorities moved Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to the prison at Fort Devens, Massachusetts, from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where some of the victims were also being treated. Devens is about 39 miles west of Boston.
The prison specializes in inmates who need long-term medical or mental health care, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons website. It currently holds about 1,000 prisoners.
New York City officials said on Thursday that Dzhokhar told investigators in the hospital that after the FBI released their pictures, the brothers made an impromptu plan to drive to New York and set off more bombs in Times Square. New York has been on heightened alert since the September 11, 2001, attacks.
U.S. lawmakers are demanding answers from security officials about what they might have known about the brothers, particularly Tamerlan, before the bombing on April 15.
In 2011, Russia had asked the FBI to question Tamerlan because of concerns that he may have been an Islamic militant. The FBI has said it interviewed him but found no cause to continue investigating.
“Clearly enough was not done in order to monitor the activities here, especially given the fact that it wasn’t one heads-up we were given but several,” U.S. Representative Ed Royce, a Republican who heads the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told CNN.
A trust gap remains between U.S. and Russian intelligence services, former Cold War rivals. U.S. officials said they consider counterterrorism information from Moscow’s bitter conflict with Islamic militants in Chechnya and other parts of the volatile north Caucasus especially suspect.
A little more than three years ago top Boston FBI agent Richard DesLauriers, the same man running the bombing investigation, took part in an FBI operation code-named “Ghost Stories” in which 10 people were rounded up because the United States believed they were Russian spies.
Two of those people, Donald Heathfield and Ann Foley, were arrested in Cambridge, Massachusetts, about a mile west of the house the Tsarnaevs lived in. All 10 were handed over to Russia in a carefully choreographed exchange for four Russians who had been jailed for working for western governments.
Additional reporting by Tim McLaughlin; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn, Grant McCool and Cynthia Osterman