Leaders: Video shows knife-wielding suspect not shot in back

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Officers: Man Shot Dead by Boston Police Was Plotting to Behead a Cop

BOSTON (AP) -- A knife-wielding man killed by the terror investigators who had him under surveillance was confronted because he had purchased knives and talked of an imminent attack on "boys in blue," the FBI said Wednesday.

Usaama Rahim plotted for at least a week to attack police, the FBI said in a complaint against David Wright, who was arrested the same day Rahim was shot to death. On Wednesday, Wright was ordered held on a charge of conspiracy with intent to obstruct a federal investigation.

The FBI said the two men bought three fighting knives and a sharpener on or before May 26, and that Rahim told Wright on Tuesday that he would begin trying to randomly kill police officers in Massachusetts.

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Leaders: Video shows knife-wielding suspect not shot in back
In this courtroom sketch, David Wright, second from left, is depicted standing with his attorney Jessica Hedges, right, as Magistrate Judge M. Page Kelley presides, left, during a hearing Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in federal court in Boston. Wright was ordered held Wednesday on a charge of conspiracy with intent to obstruct a federal investigation in the case of Usaama Rahim, who while under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent. (Jane Flavell Collins via AP)
In this courtroom sketch, Nicholas Rovinski, second from right, of Warwick, R.I., is depicted standing with his attorney William Fick, right, as Magistrate Judge Donald Cabell, left, presides during a hearing Friday, June 12, 2015, in federal court in Boston. Rovinski is accused of conspiring with Usaama Rahim of Boston, who was killed the previous week by terror investigators who had him under 24-hour surveillance. (Jane Flavell Collins via AP)
First Assistant Suffolk County District Attorney Patrick Haggan points to surveillance video released during a press conference Monday, June 8, 2015, in Boston, which they say shows the fatal shooting of a Boston man suspected of plotting to kill police officers. The video comes from a restaurant across the street, and the figures shown are blurry. Police and the FBI say it shows officers shooting 26-year-old Usaama Rahim on June 2 in the city's Roslindale neighborhood after they attempted to question him about "terrorist-related information." (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Commissioner of the Boston Police Department William Evans speaks as First Assistant Suffolk County District Attorney Patrick Haggan, far left, and Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley listen after releasing a surveillance video during a press conference Monday, June 8, 2015, in Boston, which they say shows the fatal shooting of a Boston man suspected of plotting to kill police officers. The video comes from a restaurant across the street, and the figures shown are blurry. Police and the FBI say it shows officers shooting 26-year-old Usaama Rahim on June 2 in the city's Roslindale neighborhood after they attempted to question him about "terrorist-related information." (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Imam Abdullah Faaruuq speaks during a news conference Thursday, June 4, 2015, in Boston's Roslindale neighborhood in the area where Usaama Rahim, 26, was shot to death. Faaruuq, a Muslim leader close to the Rahim family, said that his killing by Boston police and the FBI was reckless and unnecessary. Police said Usaama Rahim had lunged at members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force with a knife when they approached him. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Family members and supporters escort Rahimah Rahim, center, the mother of shooting victim Usaama Rahim, after a news conference on Thursday, June 4, 2015, in Boston's Roslindale neighborhood in the area where her son was shot to death. Police said Usaama Rahim had lunged at members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force with a knife when they approached to question him. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Attorney Ron Sullivan speaks on behalf of family and friends of shooting victim Usaama Rahim during a news conference Thursday, June 4, 2015, in Boston's Roslindale neighborhood in the area where Rahim was shot to death. Police said Usaama Rahim had lunged at members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force with a knife when they approached to question him. Listening are Rahim's mother, Rahimah Rahim, to the right of Sullivan, and his brother, Ibrahim Rahim. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
U.S. Marshals patrol the waterfront side of the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse during the arraignment of David Wright Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in Boston. Wright was ordered held Wednesday on a charge of conspiracy with intent to obstruct a federal investigation in the case of Usaama Rahim, who while under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
Supporters of David Wright leave the Federal Courthouse building after Wright's arraignment Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in Boston. Wright was ordered held Wednesday on a charge of conspiracy with intent to obstruct a federal investigation in the case of Usaama Rahim, who while under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
Abdullah Faaruuq, Imam of the Mosque for the Praising of Allah, left, speaks to reporters during a news conference as Darnell Williams, president of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, behind center, Boston Police Commissioner William Evans, front right, and Rev. Arthur Gerald, Jr., president of the Black Ministerial Alliance of Greater Boston, right, look on during a news conference, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, at Boston Police Headquarters, in Boston. Boston police said they have video showing Usaama Rahim, a man who was under 24-hour surveillance by terrorism investigators, lunging with a knife at a police officer and an FBI agent before he was shot and killed. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Community members and police officials at Boston Police Department Headquarters prepare to see video, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in Boston, of a fatal police shooting on Tuesday, in the city's Roslindale neighborhood. Police said the video shows that officers did not have their weapons drawn when they approached Usaama Rahim and that they backed up when he initially lunged at them with a knife. (David Ryan/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
Community members and police officials at Boston Police Department Headquarters prepare to see a video, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in Boston, of a fatal police shooting on Tuesday, in the city's Roslindale neighborhood. Police said the video shows that officers did not have their weapons drawn when they approached Usaama Rahim and that they backed up when he initially lunged at them with a knife. (David Ryan/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
Community members and police officials pray at the Boston Police Department headquarters before seeing a video, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in Boston, of a fatal police shooting on Tuesday, in the city's Roslindale neighborhood. Police said the video shows that officers did not have their weapons drawn when they approached Usaama Rahim and that they backed up when he initially lunged at them with a knife. (David Ryan/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
Abdullah Faaruuq, Imam of the Mosque for the Praising of Allah, at microphones, raises his hand as he speaks to reporters during a news conference as Boston Police Commissioner William Evans, second from top right, looks on, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, at Boston Police Headquarters, in Boston. Boston police said they have video showing Usaama Rahim, a man who was under 24-hour surveillance by terrorism investigators, lunging with a knife at a police officer and an FBI agent before he was shot and killed. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Abdullah Faaruuq, Imam of the Mosque for the Praising of Allah, left, speaks to reporters during a news conference as Darnell Williams, president of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, behind center, Boston Police Commissioner William Evans, front right, and Rev. Arthur Gerald, Jr., president of the Black Ministerial Alliance of Greater Boston, right, look on during a news conference, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, at Boston Police Headquarters, in Boston. Boston police said they have video showing Usaama Rahim, a man who was under 24-hour surveillance by terrorism investigators, lunging with a knife at a police officer and an FBI agent before he was shot and killed. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
BOSTON - JUNE 3: Community members arrive at Boston Police Headquarters preparing to see video of Boston Police shooting in Roslindale. (Photo by David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
The apartment building where David Wright was taken into custody the previous day, is seen, Wednesday, June 3, 2015, in Everett, Mass. Wright will face federal charges Wednesday in Boston in connection to the investigation of Usaama Rahim, who had been under 24-hour surveillance by terrorism investigators, and who was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent. (AP Photo/Phil Marcelo)
FBI Special Agent in Charge of Boston Vincent B. Lisi, right to left, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans listen to a reporter's question during a joint news conference at the Boston Police Department's Headquarters Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in Boston. A man under surveillance by a joint terrorism task force was shot and killed outside a pharmacy Tuesday after he lunged with a knife at a city police officer when asked to drop his military style knife before the officer and an FBI agent opened fire. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
Police vehicles sit in front of a multi-storied home Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in Everett, Mass., being searched by authorities in connection with a man shot and killed earlier in the day in Boston. The man, under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent, Boston police Commissioner William Evans said. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
The knife brandished by a man under surveillance by a joint terrorism task force who was shot and killed outside a pharmacy Tuesday is displayed during a news conference at the Boston Police Department Headquarters Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in Boston. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
Police work inside a gated community Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in the Roslindale neighborhood of Boston, where a residence was being searched by authorities in connection with a man shot and killed earlier in the day. The man, under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent, Boston police Commissioner William Evans said. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
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A police officer stands near a multi-storied home Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in Everett, Mass., being searched by authorities in connection with a man shot and killed earlier in the day in Boston. The man, under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent, Boston police Commissioner William Evans said. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
A sign posts the speed limit in a gated community Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in the Roslindale neighborhood of Boston, where a residence was being searched by authorities in connection with a man shot and killed earlier in the day. The man, under surveillance by terrorism investigators, was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent, Boston police Commissioner William Evans said. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley speaks as FBI Special Agent in Charge of Boston Vincent B. Lisi, left to right, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans, far right, look on during a joint news conference at the Boston Police Department's Headquarters Tuesday, June 2, 2015, in Boston. A man under surveillance by a joint terrorism task force was shot and killed outside a pharmacy Tuesday after he lunged with a knife at a city police officer when asked to drop his military style knife before the officer and an FBI agent opened fire. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
Names are listed on a mailbox at the apartment building in Everett, Mass., Wednesday, June 3, 2015, where David Wright was taken into custody Tuesday. Wright will face federal charges Wednesday in Boston in connection to the investigation of Usaama Rahim, who had been under 24-hour surveillance by terrorism investigators, and who was killed after he lunged with a knife at a Boston police officer and an FBI agent. (AP Photo/Phil Marcelo)
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Faced with an imminent threat, the anti-terror task force of FBI agents and Boston police confronted Rahim on a sidewalk and fatally shot him when he refused to drop his knife, authorities said.

Authorities moved swiftly Wednesday to manage perceptions of the shooting, which killed a black man whose family is well-known among Muslims and African-Americans in Boston.

Rahim's mother is a nurse at Boston University. His older brother, Ibrahim Rahim, is a scholar known for preaching after the Boston marathon bombings that violence is anti-Islamic.

Ibrahim Rahim initially posted a message on Facebook alleging that police repeatedly shot his brother in the back on Tuesday while calling their father for help. But the imam's version unraveled Wednesday after police showed their video of the confrontation to community leaders.

Darnell Williams, president of the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, said he could "150 percent corroborate" the police account. The images clearly show that Rahim "was not on a cellphone and was not shot in the back," Williams said.

The FBI complaint refers to a recorded conversation between Rahim, 26, and Wright, 24, in which Wright made a comparison to "thinking with your head on your chest." The FBI said that was a reference to Islamic State propaganda videos showing severed heads on the chests of beheading victims.

Boston Police Commissioner William Evans said officers confronted the suspect because "military and law enforcement lives were at threat."

The video, which police did not make available publicly, shows that Rahim menaced the officers with a large military-style knife and that they initially backed away before shooting him when he refused to drop it, police said.

Williams said he's not ready to call the shooting justifiable, and a Boston Muslim leader, Imam Abdullah Faaruuq, said it wasn't clear from the "inconclusive" video whether police had to use deadly force.

"They might have approached him in a different way," Faaruuq said.

Ibrahim Rahim could not be reached for comment Wednesday as he traveled to Boston to bury his brother.

Usaama Rahim was under investigation after communicating with and spreading Islamic State terror group propaganda online, said U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee.

"These cases are a reminder of the dangers posed by individuals radicalized through social media," the Texas Republican said.

Prosecutor Stephanie Siegmann said Wright posed a serious risk of fleeing or obstructing justice if not held pending a June 19 hearing. Wright's attorney, Jessica Hedges, denied that, saying he has deep roots in the Boston area and an "incredibly loving and supportive family."

Hedges urged the government to be "as transparent as possible" and "abide by the law" as it investigates this case, saying "we have serious concerns about that already."

Authorities quickly showed the video to African-American and Muslim community leaders. The meeting "was all about pulling the community together," Evans said.

After the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013, Ibrahim Rahim described Jihadis who promote terror as "hell-bent on Islam's destruction from within," and urged fellow Islamic leaders to drive "a mass recall of the rhetoric of hate and to suppress any and all human desire to harm others based on any contrived justification."

Ibrahim Rahim "is a great guy and preaches a very moderate form of Islam," said Yusufi Vali, executive director of the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center, where Usaama Rahim briefly worked as a guard. Vali said Usaama Rahim did not regularly pray at the center and did not volunteer there or serve in any leadership positions.

Boston voter registration records describe Rahim as a student. Other records show he applied for a security guard license in Florida in 2011, but didn't follow through. A spokeswoman said Rahim had worked for CVS since March.

Rahim's shooting is being investigated by the Suffolk district attorney's office and the FBI - routine for shootings involving police. The Council of American-Islamic Relations is monitoring them, spokesman Ibrahim Hooper said.

Sadiki Kambon, director of the Black Community Information Center, an activist group in Boston, called for the U.S. Justice Department to lead a more independent review.

"Why couldn't they have just gone to his house and questioned him?" Kambon asked.

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Associated Press writer Eric Tucker contributed to this report from Washington.

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This story has been corrected to show the last name of the imam who viewed the video is Faaruuq, not Farooq.

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