Bella Tsarnaeva, a sister of the alleged Boston Marathon bombing suspects, appeared in court this week to face drug charges stemming from an arrest last year.
In December 2012, police responded to a domestic violence call at the 24-year-old and her boyfriend’s apartment in Fairview, New Jersey. When officers arrived, they immediately smelled marijuana and arrested the two. Bella was charged with possession and distribution and plead not guilty to the charges back in May.
The woman appeared in court earlier this week, but her criminal record will likely be wiped clean. Prosecutors say that she will be admitted to a pre-trial intervention program while a deal is drawn up with her boyfriend.
Bella’s brothers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev are allegedly responsible for the April bombings at the Boston Marathon. Tamerlan was killed during a shootout with police following a long manhunt for the suspects, while Dzhokhar was eventually found hiding out in a boat parked in someone’s backyard. Dzhokhar, 19, remains in jail and faces terrorism charges. The Boston Bombing killed three and injured nearly 265 others. A fourth person, university police officer Sean Collier, was shot to death by the brothers during the manhunt that followed the bombing.
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Bella has not been implicated in the attacks and maintains that she had nothing to do with what happened, but despite no involvement, she allegedly receives verbal abuse and death threats often.
The background of the Tsarnaev family is complicated, as most of the extended relatives living in and out of the U.S. condemn what the two brothers allegedly did back in April. The parents, however, who currently reside in the northern Russian caucus of Dagestan, believe that their surviving teenage son is not only innocent, but is a “victim” of the justice system in America.
While Dzhokhar sits in jail awaiting a trial on charges of terrorism, his sister Bella is dealing with her own set of problems after her arrest on drug charges back in December, prior to the attacks in Boston. Her boyfriend, Ahmad Khalil, faces the same drug charges and also pleads not guilty.