Boston Bombers Pal Slain in Florida Eyed in 'Jewish' Triple Murder

Did Ibragim Todashev Help Kill 2 Jews on 9/11 Anniversary?

Triple Murder Suspect: FBI agents investigate the aftermath of the fatal shooting of Ibragim Todashev in Orlando. The friend of Boston bombing suspect Dzokhar Tsarnaev was being questioned about the murder of two Jewish men and a third man in 2011.
getty images
Triple Murder Suspect: FBI agents investigate the aftermath of the fatal shooting of Ibragim Todashev in Orlando. The friend of Boston bombing suspect Dzokhar Tsarnaev was being questioned about the murder of two Jewish men and a third man in 2011.

By Seth Berkman

Published May 22, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Multi Page

A Chechen friend of Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed after becoming enraged over questioning about his possible role in the murder of two Jewish men in 2011.

Ibragim Todashev was shot numerous times early Wednesday morning in his home in Orlando, Fla., after attacking an F.B.I. special agent with a knife, according to local law enforcement officials. The agent and two Massachusetts state troopers had come to question Todashev about his ties to Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the deceased suspect in last April’s Boston Marathon bombings. Tsarnaev is currently being investigated for his possible involvement in the triple murder of Erik Weissman, Rafael Teken, and Brendan Mess, who was Tsarnaev’s close friend.

A law enforcement official told the New York Times on Wednesday that, “The investigators were working on the theory that [Todashev] and Tamerlan had done the murder.”

Jewish Victim: Erik Weissman was murdered on Sept. 11, 2011, along with another Jewish man and a third victim described as Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s best friend.
Jewish Victim: Erik Weissman was murdered on Sept. 11, 2011, along with another Jewish man and a third victim described as Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s best friend.

Authorities had been in contact with Todashev twice a week since the bombing. The F.B.I. agent involved in Wednesday’s altercation suffered minor wounds.

The International Business Times reported that Todashev had confessed to a role in the triple murder, which took place in the Boston suburb of Waltham, Mass.

John Miller, a former FBI assistant director, told “CBS This Morning” that others living in Todashev’s apartment complex had been interviewed. Miller also said that Todashev had visited Tamerlan in Boston and was recently planning a trip to Chechnya. The F.B.I. visit was spurred by rumors that Todashev had canceled the trip.

The FBI said in a statement that a special agent, “acting on the imminent threat posed by the individual, responded with deadly force. The individual was killed and the special agent was transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.”

It said the shooting occurred in Orlando, Florida, while the special agent and other law enforcement agents, including two Massachusetts State Police officers, were interviewing the man about the blasts that killed three people and injured 264 others at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.

“A violent confrontation was initiated by the individual,” the FBI said, without providing further details.

Todashev’s friend, Khusn Taramiv, said Todashev knew bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev because both were mixed martial-arts fighters but had no connection to the bombing.

“Back when he used to live in Boston, right, they used to hang out,” Taramiv told Central Florida News 13. “He met them few times ‘cause he was MMA fighter the other guy was boxer, right. They just knew each other, that’s it.”

The shooting occurred at an Orlando apartment complex where several people of Chechen descent lived. Taramiv said Todashev and others in the complex had been questioned several times by law enforcement agents since the day the Tsarnaev brothers were identified as the bombing suspects.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev
getty images
Tamerlan Tsarnaev

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, died in a gunfight with police. His brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, was found hiding in a boat in Watertown, Massachusetts, four days after the bombings. He was charged with crimes that could carry the death penalty if he is convicted.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev had been on a U.S. government database of potential terrorism suspects and the United States had twice been warned by Russia that he might be an Islamic militant, according to U.S. security officials.

In Florida, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office said Todashev had been arrested on May 4 and charged with aggravated battery with great bodily harm after getting into a fight with another man over a parking space at an Orlando shopping mall.

Police said they arrested Todashev as he was leaving the scene and found a man lying on the ground near a “considerable” amount of blood.

Todashev told police the other man came at him swinging and the two started fighting. “Todashev said he was only fighting to protect his knee because he had surgery in March,” the report said.

The man, who suffered a split upper lip and had several teeth knocked out of place, did not to press charges against Todashev, who was released from jail on a $3,500 bond, a sheriff’s spokeswoman said.

Another neighbor, who asked not to be identified, said Todashev was frequently seen shadow boxing as he jogged around the small lakes that dotted the apartment complex where he lived two blocks from the Universal Orlando theme park.

With Reuters


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • What Thomas Aquinas might say about #Hamas' tunnels:
  • The Jewish bachelorette has spoken.
  • "When it comes to Brenda Turtle, I ask you: What do you expect of a woman repressed all her life who suddenly finds herself free to explore? We can sit and pass judgment, especially when many of us just simply “got over” own sexual repression. But we are obliged to at least acknowledge that this problem is very, very real, and that complete gender segregation breeds sexual repression and unhealthy attitudes toward female sexuality."
  • "Everybody is proud of the resistance. No matter how many people, including myself, disapprove of or even hate Hamas and its ideology, every single person in Gaza is proud of the resistance." Part 2 of Walid Abuzaid's on-the-ground account of life in #Gaza:
  • After years in storage, Toronto’s iconic red-and-white "Sam the Record Man" sign, complete with spinning discs, will return to public view near its original downtown perch. The sign came to symbolize one of Canada’s most storied and successful Jewish family businesses.
  • Is $4,000 too much to ask for a non-member to be buried in a synagogue cemetery?
  • "Let’s not fall into the simplistic us/them dichotomy of 'we were just minding our business when they started firing rockets at us.' We were not just minding our business. We were building settlements, manning checkpoints, and filling jails." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: 10,000 Israel supporters gathered for a solidarity rally near the United Nations in New York yesterday.
  • Step into the Iron Dome with Tuvia Tenenbom.
  • What do you think of Wonder Woman's new look?
  • "She said that Ruven Barkan, a Conservative rabbi, came into her classroom, closed the door and turned out the lights. He asked the class of fourth graders to lie on the floor and relax their bodies. Then, he asked them to pray for abused children." Read Paul Berger's compelling story about a #Savannah community in turmoil:
  • “Everything around me turns orange, then a second of silence, then a bomb goes off!" First installment of Walid Abuzaid’s account of the war in #Gaza:
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.