Late last night and into this morning, authorities have been tracking the “white hat” suspect from the Boston Marathon bombing who they have identified as 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. A second suspect, Dzhokhar’s 26-year-old brother Tamerlan, died from injuries inflicted during an early morning shootout with police.
The boys’ father, sister, two uncles, and an aunt have all been contacted and have spoken out about their feelings about their young relatives’ being suspected in the attack on the Boston Marathon.
"They never could have done this. Never, ever, ever!" Dzhokhar’s father Anzort Tsarnaev told PEOPLE via phone from Russia. Anzort was audibly upset at the idea of his sons being involved in the attack, screaming and yelling in defense of the boys.
"My sons liked everybody,” Anzort continued. “They very good kids. They never do bad things to anybody. I talked to my sons yesterday, both of them. We talked about the bombing. I was worried about them, they said they were okay.
"I am very depressed," he said. "How am I going to live? Never I think in my mind this happen. My sons hate people who do bombs, they hate terrorists. Why they kill my son? And where is my other son? They have time to catch my other son, not kill."
Alina Tsarnaeva, the sister of the young mens, told People, "I am hurt for all the people who lost someone. I lost a relative, my brother. I love my brothers, this is shocking. I don't know what got into them."
Dzhokhar, who was also known as Johar, was said to have been a popular, well-adjusted student in Cambridge.
Tamerlan was reported to have called his uncle, Alvi Tsarnaev, just minutes before he was shot in a gunfight. At that time, Alvi had no idea that the boys were suspects or were running from police, and it is during the 5-minute phone call that Tamerlan asked for forgiveness.
“I asked him what he was doing [with his life]. He said, ‘I fix cars, I got married, got a baby,” Alvi told The Journal News. When his nephew asked for forgiveness, he replied, “I forgive you and I love you.” When the uncle finally learned of the boys’ destructive act on Friday morning from news coverage, he said, “Killing innocent people, I cannot forgive that. It's crazy. I don't believe it now even. How can I forgive this?"
A second uncle, Ruslan Tsarni, spoke to CBS Boston early on Friday saying of his deceased nephew Tamerlan, “He deserved this. He absolutely deserved this. They do not deserve to live on this earth.”
The brothers’ aunt, Maret Tsatnaeva, was in shock and disbelief that her nephews were being hunted for the attack. “They cannot go crazy or mad or sick or psycho just for one day,” Marev told the Toronto Star outside of her Toronto home, “show me evidence, and then I will think about what they may have done. As far as I know them, they were in good health and good mind.”
Sources: People, The Journal News, CBS Boston, Toronto Star