Tsarnaev texted friends "LOL" after bombing

Details emerge about the involvement of the bombing suspect's three college friends

By Natasha Lennard
Published May 2, 2013 8:24PM (UTC)
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Details have emerged about the actions of three friends of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, all of whom were charged Wednesday with covering up evidence to obstruct the investigation. Two Kazakh students -- Dias Kadyrbayev and Azamat Tazhayakov -- and a U.S. citizen, Robel Phillipos, all 19, are alleged to have removed Tsarnaev's laptop and a backpack containing fireworks from his dorm room, placing the incriminating items into a dumpster. Via the Guardian:

According to the criminal complaint against Kadyrbayev and Tazhayakov, the pair recognised Tsarnaev from pictures released by the authorities four days after the attack. Kadyrbayev is said to have told FBI agents that then he sent text messages to Tsarnaev, who replied "Lol", "You better not text me", and "Come to my room and take whatever you want."

The complaint alleges the Kazakh pair then went with Phillipos to Tsarnaev's dorm room at Pine Dale Hall. They were let in by Tsarnaev's unnamed roommate, who told them Tsarnaev had left some hours earlier.

The FBI says the accused men described how, while watching a movie in the room, they noticed a backpack containing seven red tubes of fireworks, emptied of their explosive powder. Kadyrbayev, by now sure of Tsarnaev's involvement in the bombings, admitted to agents that he decided to remove the backpack "in order to help his friend Tsarnaev avoid trouble".

Natasha Lennard

Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email nlennard@salon.com.

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