Sister Helen Prejean, a Catholic nun, testified in the trial of Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and asked that he be spared the death penalty. 

Prejean, famous for counseling inmates on death row, spoke with Tsarnaev and claimed he showed remorse for the suffering he caused the victims of the bombings.

Sister Helen Prejean

Sister Helen Prejean

“I had every reason to think he was taking it in and was genuinely sorry for what he did,” Prejean testified, according to CNN.

“He said emphatically, ‘No one deserves to suffer like they did,’” she said, according to the New York Times

Prejean is known as an outspoken opponent of the death penalty, writing a bestselling book on the subject called “Dead Man Walking.” She met with Tsarnaev five times over the past year at the request of Tsarnaev’s defense lawyers, according to Yahoo News.

Prejean’s testimony came in light of the battle over Tsarnaev’s sentencing. Found guilty on 30 counts, including setting off weapons of mass destruction, it is to be decided whether or not he will receive the death penalty.

If Tsarnaev is spared the death penalty, he will spend his sentence at a supermax penitentiary in Florence, Colorado. There he would serve 23 hours a day in solitary confinement.

Emily Abbey is a Salem based student and writer. She loves cooking, coffee, and anything to do with the Pacific Northwest. She hopes to become a teacher, influencing students to write and make a difference in their corner of the world.