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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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April 30th, 2013
05:00 PM ET

Living below the Boston bombing suspects

From the moment one neighbor met Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the Boston bombing suspect was ranting about the Koran and American foreign policy.

"He said that the bible was a cheap copy of the Koran. He said that the American government used it as an excuse to invade different countries. He mentioned that the American government was still a colonial power, wanting to colonize Africa and the Middle East," said Albrecht Ammon, a neighbor who lived in the same building as the Tsarnaevs.

Ammon said Tsarnaev claimed  most casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan were innocent bystanders, gunned down by American people, prompting the neighbor to ask about suicide bombers that kill innocent people.

"He said that not all Muslims are like that. And Islam is all about peace and love," said Ammon.

Ammon woke up to the police in his backyard shortly after the Boston terror attack. The police asked him to leave the building, and one officer showed him the suspects' pictures. Ammon said he was stunned by the news, shocked that he had lived beneath the brothers.

Ammon said he was especially surprised that the younger brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was involved.

"I only met him once, but he seemed like a really nice guy. And this was only two weeks before everything happened, he was asking about friends, seemed like he was still interested in a social life," said Ammon.

Even after arguing with Tamerlan at a local pizza shop, however, Ammon said he also never suspected Tamerlan would carry out a terrorist attack.

"I wasn't suspicious afterwards. It just seemed like he was, he strongly believed in his religion, and had his disagreements with Christianity and the American government," said Ammon.

"He didn't seem different than most people."

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