Since Boston terror suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was captured last Friday, he's accrued a bizarre fan base who believe he is innocent - or if not innocent, at least less culpable than his brother.
Supporters have launched a #FreeJahar Twitter campaign and Change.org petition that now has over 12,500 signatures. "We believe that within the chaos caused by the Boston Marathon explosion, two young men were wrongfully accused..." the petition begins.
Tsarnaev's college friend, Troy Crossley, 20, launched the #FreeJahar hashtag. "Here is a kid with no known terrorist ties...There's no evidence that Jahar was a radical Islamist...What reason does he have to hate the U.S.? He's got scholarships from the state of Massachusetts. He's a citizen, this is his home and it has been his home since he was nine years old," said a young woman who follows Crossley to the Daily Beast.
The petition's founder and many of the #freejahar supporters appear to be teenage girls.
Beyond those convinced of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's innocence, there are many others who are perversely sympathetic to the man allegedly responsible for killing three and maiming dozens. A Gawker piece asks "Did Tamerlan Tsarnaev Pressure His Younger Brother Into Terrorism?" - as though that would absolve the younger brother of murderous crimes.