Will there be an independent investigation of Ibragim Todashev shooting?
Family and friends of man shot by FBI say there should be
Published: June 5, 2013
“He [Todashev] said to me, ‘I just found out that the Boston bomber was Chechen. Can you believe it? I can’t believe I knew the guy, too,’” Taramov recalls.
Despite the inconvenience, Taramov says he and Todashev were cooperative with the agents. “I trusted them,” Taramov said. “They told me that no one would get hurt; they wanted to just ask questions.”
However, Todashev had become exhausted by the questioning over the past few months.
“He told me that he was so tired of it,” Taramov said. “The FBI asked him to come down to the office for the questioning, but he didn’t feel like going in, so he asked them to come to his home.”
Shibly said that Todashev was asked to cancel a plane ticket for what the agents said would be his last interview.
“They told him that this would be his last interview, and he would be clear,” Shibly said. “It was his last interview.”
Shibly said that someone should examine whether the federal agents violated Todashev’s Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights – which hold that no person may be held to answer for a capital crime without the indictment of a grand jury and that all criminal suspects have the right to a fair and speedy trial before an impartial jury – in handling the case.
“We will be requesting the U.S. Department of Justice further investigate what happened on the day of the shooting,” Shibly said. “We also want look at if there was excessive force used by law enforcement.” (UPDATE: CAIR has sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice's civil rights division, requesting an investigation. Read the letter here.)
Officials at the FBI have been tight-lipped about the incident, and said in a statement that the agency is conducting its own review, the findings of which will be presented to the Shooting Incident Review Group, which consists of members of both the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice.
When asked for his opinion on the condition of Todashev’s body, Dr. Gary Utz, Deputy Chief Medical Examiner for Orange and Osceola counties, said it’s the policy of the office not to discuss cases under active investigation.
“The autopsy report has not yet been finalized and law enforcement has requested that the results not be released pending their investigation,” he said.
Anonymous federal law-enforcement sources quoted in the national news media said Todashev became violent while writing a confession statement acknowledging that he helped Tsarnaev commit the 2011 triple murder. In early accounts, they said he might have been armed with a knife; more recent accounts say he could have been armed with a broomstick, a metal rod or even a samurai sword.
Shibly confirmed there was a sword that hung on a wall at Todashev’s apartment, but he questions why the FBI wouldn’t remove it from the room during the five-hour questioning if they thought it was a threat.
When asked whether it was true that Todashev was writing a confession to the triple homicide that FBI agents say he helped Tsarnaev commit, Shibly could not say. “Dead men can’t tell tales,” he said.
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