Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Seen At UMass Dartmouth After Boston Bombing, Discussed Attack: Officials, Students

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Following the Boston Marathon bombing, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev spent several seemingly typical days on the campus of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth before the FBI released photos of him as a suspect, according to friends and school officials.

Tsarnaev, a 19-year-old UMass Dartmouth student, was arrested Friday night as a suspect in the Boston attack following a massive manhunt. Tsarnaev's alleged accomplice and 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan, was killed during a shootout with police early Friday morning. The brothers are believed to be responsible for last Monday's bombing in Boston, but the FBI didn't release photos of the two until Thursday afternoon. During that gap, the younger Tsarnaev was spotted on his campus acting normally, according to several students who say they know or spoke with the suspect.

Zach Bettencourt, a UMass Dartmouth student, told NBC News when he spoke with Tsarnaev on campus Tuesday, the bombing suspect looked him "straight in the eye" and commented on the Boston Marathon attack.

"I went up and said hi to him, I talked about how it was crazy we had a bombing in Boston. ... He was saying 'Yeah, you know, it's really a tragedy it's happening right now, it's a sad thing,'" Bettencourt said.

A female student who said she is a friend of Tsarnaev and asked not to be named told the Boston Globe she saw him at a party Wednesday night with some of his soccer friends.

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