The FBI have confirmed that a FBI special agent was involved in a deadly shooting early this morning (22 May 2013) near the Universal Studios Theme park in Orlando, Florida. Two friends of the victim say he was from Chechnya and knew one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects.
The fatal shooting happened just after midnight at 6022 Peregrine Avenue in Orlando. The same friends who claimed that the victim knew one of the Boston Bombers identified the man who was shot and killed as Ibragim Todashev.
FBI Special Agent Dave Couvertier told Local 6, a local news station, “The agent encountered the suspect while conducting official duties. The suspect is deceased,”
The FBI has not yet confirmed the link to the Boston bombing.
Khusen Taramov, a friend of Todashev, told the reporters from Local 6 that Todashev knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Tamerlan engaged in a vicious shoot out with police near Boston not long after the Boston Marathon bombing and he died as a result.
Taramov went on to tell the Local 6 crew, “Back when (Todashev) used to live in Boston, they used to hang out — not hang out — he knew him. They met a few times because (Todashev) was a MMA fighter and (Tsarnaev) was a boxer. They just knew each other. That’s it.”
Taramov went on to add that Todashev had last spoken with the recently deceased Todashev on the telephone over month ago.
Taramov was adamant that Todashev could not have been connected to the Boston bombing. He said, “I know that for sure.”
Taramov claimed tht the FBI had been watching and following Todashev ever since Tsarnaev had been identified as a suspect in the April 15th Boston Marathon bombing.
Taramov said, “We had a feeling that a worse-case scenario, that something like (a shooting) is going to happen.” Taramov then added that he knew that Todashev had recently booked a plane ticket.
He said “He had a ticket to New York. From there, he was going to go home.” “[The FBI was] pushing him to stay, saying, ‘We want to interview one last time.'”
While he talked to the local news team, Taramov said he was surprised when he first learned about the Boston Marathon bombing and then was shocked when he heard about who the suspects were. He said, “When I found out it was Chechens (who were named as suspects), I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it.”
The brother of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was arrested in connection with the April 15 Boston bombing, which left three people dead and wounded 275.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); the Boston Police Department (BPD) and the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) have been investigating and following leads since the Boston Marathon Bombings and have been actively trying to locate any individuals that were connected with the perpetrators of the April 15th atrocity.
While the FBI has not released a statement yet as to why they were interested in the dead man who, as it was pointed out by witnesses, knew one of the bombing suspects, it is expected that a statement will be forthcoming.
By Michael Smith