Tsarnaev college roommate testifies in Boston bombing obstruction trial
A student who shared Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s dorm room at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth testified in federal court Tuesday that he witnessed three of the terror suspect’s friends rifling through his belongings days after the Marathon Bombing.
Andrew Dwinells was the sixth witnessed to be called on day two of the trial of Azamat Tazhayakov, 20, who is the first of three Tsarnaev friends to be tried on charges of interfering with the bombing investigation.
Dwinells, an electrical engineering student, said on the night of April 18, 2013 – just three days after the Boston Marathon bombings - Tazhayakov and another man who prosecutors identified as Dias Kadyrbayev asked to be let into his room because Tsarnaev sent a text to his friend saying “something about [Tsarnaev] leaving the country and he won’t be back, so [Kadyrbayev] can go ahead and take what he wants [from the room].”
Kadyrbayev then removed a small bag of marijuana from Tsarnaev’s drawer, and spent roughly 10 minutes going through Tsarnaev’s belongings, according to Dwinells.
Dwinells described the incident as “abnormal,” and said it was “fair to say” that he was not friends with Tsarnaev.
“We shared a room but we didn’t talk much. We talked about movies and TV or whatever was on [TV]. We were more acquaintances,” he said.
However the fifth witness to be called in the case, Alexa Guvara, was indeed friends with both Tsarnaev and Tazhayakov.
Guvara, a day care assistant who is on medical leave from her studies at UMass Dartmouth, said Tuesday in court that she witnessed Tsarnaev, Tazhayakov and Kadyrbayev socializing on several occasions.
The group would eat, talk, play video games and smoke marijuana, Guvara said.
One night in March 2013, Guvara traveled to the Charles River in Cambridge with the men. Tsarnaev pulled some fireworks from a black back pack and set them off.
Guvara said she used to exchange text messages with Tsarnaev, who another friend claimed dealt drugs on campus.
“Did you ever convey or discuss getting high or marijuana?” a federal prosecutor asked
“We’d say, ‘roll up,’ as in like let’s smoke… ‘Do you have bud? Do you wanna smoke?,” Guvara responded.
Guvara became visibly emotional when a defense attorney for Tazhayakov asked about her initial reaction upon realizing Tsarnaev was a bombing suspect.
“When you saw images you didn’t believe he was capable of doing something like that?” Attorney Nicholas Wooldridge asked Guvara.
“No, I did not,” Guvara said, before wiping her eye.