Federal prosecutors have asked for a court order that would prevent Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the accused Boston Marathon bomber, from seeing autopsy photos of people killed in the bombings, except for photos offered as exhibits at his trial.
Allowing him to view all the photos would “violate the victims’ rights to dignity and privacy and subject them to needless harm and suffering,” the prosecutors argued.
“Specifically, allowing photos of the mutilated bodies of the victims to be viewed by the man accused of mutilating them would needlessly revictimize the family members in the same way that innocent children who are photographed pornographically are revictimized whenever those photos are seen by others,” prosecutors said in a six-page court filing Monday.
The prosecutors acknowledge that Tsarnaev has the right to review photos introduced in his trial, but they asked that he be prevented from viewing any photos accessible to his defense lawyers that will not be presented as evidence.
“Here, as in other cases where a defendant has no need personally to review sensitive or classified evidence that will not be used against him, the court has the power to fashion an appropriate order that will safeguard the defendant’s rights without needlessly risking harm to others,” the prosecutors argued.
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