Katherine Russell Tsarnaev: 10 things we know about the Boston Marathon suspect's wife (VIDEO)
With Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving Boston Marathon bombings suspect, charged and undergoing questioning, police are still looking into the life of his now-deceased brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev--and specifically, his 24-year-old widow Katherine Russell.
Though it's hard to believe, the elder Tsarnaev brother was not only a husband, but also a father. Now, authorities are turning their attention to his closest loved ones to try and find out what they knew about the 26-year-old's criminal plans. Here's what we know so far about his wife so far:
- Katherine Russell Tsarnaev has been described as a typical, "all-American girl" who grew up in Kingstown, Rhode Island with two younger sisters.
- Her father, Warren Russell, is an emergency room doctor whose Facebook profile lists his high school alma mater as the elite New Hampshire boarding school Phillips Exeter Academy and college as Yale. Her mother, Judith Russell, reportedly works at a social services agency.
- She attended North Kingstown High School, graduating in 2007. Her yearbook entry lists her plans as college and the Peace Corps. Her art teacher for four years, Amos Trout Paine, has spoken out about her talent in painting and drawing.
- In the fall of 2007, Katherine enrolled at Suffolk University in Boston. School records show she stopped attending in the spring of 2010 without graduating. She met Tamerlan at a night club in 2009.
- Katherine and Tamerlan got married on June 21, 2010 in Boston's Dorchester neighborhood. Katherine was 21. They moved into his family's Cambridge apartment, which they shared with Tamerlan's mother and younger brother.
- The couple had a daughter, Zahara, who is now about 3. Around the same time, Katherine converted to Islam, leaving friends and family shocked. Many say she was "brainwashed" by her husband.
- Tsarnaev's lawyer said she had no reason to suspect her husband of anything and was focused on supporting her family, working 70 to 80 hours, seven days a week as a home health care aide. According to him, her husband cared for their daughter when she was away. However, witnesses say that she was normally at home with the child and often seemed lonely.
- According to Katherine's lawyers, nothing seemed amiss to her in the days after the bombings. Tamerlan was reportedly even home when his wife left for work the last day he was alive. She learned that her husband was a suspect in the Boston Marathon explosions on TV, just like most other people.
- Katherine's family released the following statement about the ordeal: "Our daughter has lost her husband today, the father of her child. We cannot begin to comprehend how this horrible tragedy occurred. In the aftermath of the Patriot's Day horror, we know that we never really knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Our hearts are sickened by the knowledge of the horror he has inflicted. Please respect our family's privacy in this difficult time."
- Katherine has been staying at her parents' house since her husband's death. Feds visited her Sunday evening and are planning to interview, but she is reportedly refusing to talk to them.