'Almost Brilliant' Strategy: How Boston Bomber Could Avoid Death Penalty
Will accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev get the death penalty?
Judge Andrew Napolitano weighed in this morning following the opening of the trial in Boston.
Tsarnaev's defense attorney, Judy Clarke, acknowledged yesterday that her client participated in the bombing, but she argued that he was only going along with his older brother, Tamerlan, who was portrayed as the mastermind of the attack.
Clarke said Dzhokhar was "forced" to participate in the bombing by his older brother, who was killed days later by police. She said she will present evidence showing just how much influence Tamerlan had over his younger brother.
Judge Napolitano called Clarke "one of the best death penalty lawyers in the country," and he called her strategy in this case "almost brilliant."
"When the evidence of guilt is overwhelming, be honest and candid with the jury. There's no chance your client is going to walk, but there is a chance your client could stay alive. It's not a happy life, but it's life as opposed to execution," said Napolitano, adding that Clarke is giving her client a "shot" at life in prison by appealing to the common sense of the jury.
He said the government will have to disprove her arguments and prove that Dzhokhar is worthy of death.
In past cases, Clarke has represented Olympics bomber Eric Rudolph, Unabomber Ted Kaczynski and Gabby Giffords' attacker, Jared Loughner. All were spared the death penalty.
Watch his full analysis above.