America is not convinced by the FBI’s account of the shooting death of Ibragim Todashev, a former acquaintance of alleged Boston bombers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, and now reports say Todashev was unarmed.
FBI officials say that Todashev was killed in his apartment during an investigation in which he lunged at an FBI agent with a weapon. It was an act of self-defense on the agent’s part, say officials. But now CNN and other media outlets are hearing reports that the shooting was much more suspect.
Ibragim had known Tamerlan in Boston where the two had met while in Mixed Martial Arts training. Todashev later moved to Florida, where the FBI questioned him about the Boston bombings and an unsolved murder authorities say may be related.
Ibragim might have helped Tamerland carry out a 2011 unsolved murder of three men in Waltham, Massachusetts who were found covered in marijuana and strewn out next to $5,000 cash. Officials state that Ibragim was in the process of writing out his confession regarding his involvement in the triple homicide when he lunged at the agent and was shot at least six times. But really, as pundit Rachel Maddow put it, we’re left with… a baffling mess and a story that does not make sense.”
Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a law enforcement official told CNN Wednesday that Todashev had a “violent confrontation” with the agent.
It was first reported that Ibragim had a knife when he lunged. Then it was said that he might have a knife. Some reports said he tried to unarm the FBI agent. Still others said he tried to make a grab at a sword in the room. Strangely, another agent stated that Todashev had a metal broom handle when he charged.
His family is saying that the killing was performed “execution style” – meaning that Ibragim was shot in the back of the head. Maddow seized on that possibility:
“How does that comport with the FBI’s story that he was killed during questioning by armed agents who were only acting in self defense? Shot seven times, including in the back of the head?”
The FBI has set up a shooting incident review group to investigate what happened, although it may be months before we even get an “official” answer.