A man from Chechnya with links to one of the Boston bombing suspects was killed early Wednesday in a FBI-involved shooting at an apartment complex near Universal Studios Orlando.
The fatal shooting happened just after midnight at 6022 Peregrine Avenue in the Windhover Apartments. Friends identified the man who was shot and killed as 26-year-old Ibragim Todashev (pictured above).
"The agent encountered the suspect while conducting official duties. The suspect is deceased," FBI Special Agent Dave Couvertier told WKMG-TV.
John Miller, a former FBI assistant director who now works for CBS News, says the FBI was trying to re-question Todashev at his apartment when "something went wrong." Miller said the FBI agent fired shots, but details of the incident have not yet been released and it's not known if Todashev had a gun.
The FBI has not confirmed the link to the Boston bombing, but Khusen Taramov, a friend of Todashev, told WKMG that Todashev knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who was killed in a shootout with police near Boston days after the marathon bombing.
“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,” said Taramov, who added that Todashev last spoke with Tsarnaev via phone more than a month ago.
Taramov adamantly stated that Todashev, who was arrested in Orlando earlier this month on charges of aggravated battery with great bodily harm, was not connected to the bombing.
"I know that for sure," he said.
Taramov said the FBI had been watching and following Todashev since Tsarnaev (pictured, right) was identified as a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing.
“We had a feeling that a worse-case scenario, that something like (a shooting) is going to happen,” said Taramov, who added that Todashev had recently booked a plane ticket.
“He had a ticket to New York. From there, he was going to go home,” he said. “(The FBI was) pushing him to stay, saying, ‘We want to interview one last time.'"
Taramov said he was surprised when he first learned about the Boston Marathon bombing.
“When I found out it was Chechens (who were named as suspects), I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it,” he said.
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.