Trump calls for death penalty in NYC truck attack

Casey Dawson
November 3, 2017

Sanders said the Trump administration considers Saipov to be an "enemy combatant", but stressed that no decision had been made about how to prosecute him or where he would be detained.

Trump also said in a tweet late Wednesday that the alleged terrorist who killed eight people in NY should get the death penalty.

Saipov was wounded by a shot from the police after driving over a crowd of people with a vehicle and is now under surveillance in a NY hospital. "God be with them!" another tweet read.

President Donald Trump is calling for the death penalty against the man charged with mowing down pedestrians and bikers in New York City, raising the question of whether his rhetoric could imperil prosecutors' efforts in the case. In the United States, the application of death penalty is also plagued with arbitrariness, racial disparities, and error.

Asked by a reporter on Wednesday whether Saipov should be sent to the USA military prison in Cuba, where terrorist suspects captured overseas have been detained, Trump said: "I would certainly consider that".

Saipov was on Thursday charged with terrorism offences by USA prosecutors who said he chose to carry out the attack "to inflict maximum damage against civilians".

Graham told reporters that the suspect would not need to be held at Guantánamo - although he could be - and that it was possible that Saipov could later be reclassified as a civilian.

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Trump tweeted again Thursday, hours after saying Sayfullo Saipov (sy-foo-LOH' sah-YEE'-pawf) should get the death penalty. "If anyone has any doubt about that, they can ask the more than 500 criminals whom the Department of Justice has convicted of terror-related offenses since 9/11".

Trump on Wednesday referred to the the USA justice system as a "joke" and a "laughing stock".

But Trump tweets that the judicial process at the Cuban detention center takes longer than the federal court system.

Saipov, 29, is accused of killing eight people and injuring a dozen others by intentionally driving a truck onto a cycling path in New York City.

Attorney Ron Kuby, who represented a blind Egyptian sheik sentenced to life in prison after a Manhattan terrorism trial, said Trump's tweets, if anything, could work against his desire to see the death penalty.

"We're so politically correct that we're afraid to do anything", he said.

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