Students: Suspect on college campus after bombings
DARTMOUTH, Mass. (WHDH) -- University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth officials told 7News they knew Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was on campus Tuesday and Wednesday after the bombings because they say he swiped his I.D. card at the campus gym and his dormitory building.
“It’s surreal. I didn’t think it would happen to me. I didn’t think I’d know a terrorist,” said Zach Bettencourt.
Bettencourt, a fellow student, says he ran into Tsarnaev at the campus sitting down listening to music on his iPod. Bettencourt says they had a brief conversation about the bombings, and that Tsarnaev seem normal and nonchalant about the tragedy.
“He was like, ‘Yeah, tragedies happen. These things happen around the world. It’s crazy,’” Bettencourt said. “He seemed very nonchalant, he didn’t seem nervous or anything.”
Students say Tsarnaev was seen smoking outside his dorm building, and attended an off-campus pasta party.
“He just seemed really nice…he seemed like a genuine person and didn’t seem like he was a bad character,” said Emily Ip, a student.
The campus where one Tsarnaev attended classes reopened Sunday.
The University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth was evacuated Friday after it was learned that the 19-year-old was being pursued in connection with the attack that killed three people and injured more than 180 others.
Tsarnaev was later captured and is now hospitalized in serious condition.
UMass-Dartmouth residence and dining halls reopened at noon on Sunday.
The school says counselors and members of the clergy will be on hand to help any students who are fearful or uncomfortable in the aftermath of last week's events.
The school participated in the moment of silence Monday at 2:50 p.m. A vigil was held at 5 p.m. Monday.