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Defense tries to shift blame to older brother in Boston Marathon bombing

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BOSTON — Lawyers for Boston Marathon bomber Dzkhokhar Tsarnaev started their case by trying to show that his older brother was the driving force behind the 2013 terror attack.

The defense called one of its first witnesses on Monday. A cell site analyst testified that Tsarnaev's cell phone was being used in southeastern Massachusetts — where he was attending the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth — while pressure cookers were being purchased north of Boston in Saugus 2 1/2 months before the bombing. The analyst also said large quantities of BBs were purchased a little over a month before the attack in two Wal-Mart stores in New Hampshire, at a time when Tsarnaev's cell phone was again being used near the university.

Twin bombs filled with BBs and shrapnel exploded near the marathon's finish line on April 15, 2013. Three people were killed and more than 260 injured.

Prosecutors rested their case Monday after jurors saw gruesome autopsy photos and heard testimony from a medical examiner about the blast injuries that killed 8-year-old Martin Richard.

PHOTO: FILE - This combination of undated file photos shows, from left, Krystle Campbell, 29, Lu Lingzi, a Boston University graduate student from China, and Martin Richard, 8, all who were killed in the bombings near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013, in Boston. Prosecutors rested their case Monday, March 30, 2015, against Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, after jurors in his federal death penalty trial saw gruesome autopsy photos and heard a medical examiner describe the devastating injuries suffered by the three people who died in the 2013 terror attack. (AP Photo/File)
FILE - This combination of undated file photos shows, from left, Krystle Campbell, 29, Lu Lingzi, a Boston University graduate student from China, and Martin Richard, 8, all who were killed in the bombings near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013, in Boston. Prosecutors rested their case Monday, March 30, 2015, against Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, after jurors in his federal death penalty trial saw gruesome autopsy photos and heard a medical examiner describe the devastating injuries suffered by the three people who died in the 2013 terror attack. (AP Photo/File)

At least three jurors cried and wiped their eyes with tissues as they looked at photos of the boy. His parents watched somberly from the second row of the courtroom.

Dr. Henry Nields, chief medical examiner for Massachusetts, said Martin suffered injuries to virtually every part of his body, including lacerations of his liver, left kidney and spleen, broken bones and third-degree burns. His stomach also was ruptured.

Tsarnaev's lawyer told the jury during opening statements that he participated in the bombings but that his older brother, Tamerlan, was the mastermind behind the attack. Prosecutors believe the brothers were seeking retaliation against the U.S. for wars in Muslim countries.

The case by defense lawyers is expected to be relatively short. Once that is complete, jurors will deliberate on whether Tsarnaev is guilty of the 30 federal charges against him.

During the second phase of the trial, the same jury will hear more evidence to decide whether Tsarnaev, 21, should be put to death or should spend the rest of his life in prison.

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PHOTO: FILE - In this March 5, 2015 file courtroom sketch, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, center, is depicted between defense attorneys Miriam Conrad, left, and Judy Clarke, right, during his federal death penalty trial in Boston.  Prosecutors rested their case against Tsarnaev on Monday, March 30, 2015, after jurors saw gruesome autopsy photos and heard a medical examiner describe the devastating injuries suffered by the three people who died in the 2013 terror attack. (AP Photo/Jane Flavell Collins, File)
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