A triple homicide was committed in Waltham, Massachusetts in the United States, on the evening of September 11, 2011, exactly on the 10th Anniversary of the September 11 attacks. Brendan Mess, Erik Weissman, and Raphael Teken were murdered in Mess's apartment. All had their throats slit from ear to ear, with such great force that they were nearly decapitated. Thousands of dollars' worth of marijuana and money were left covering their mutilated bodies; in all $5,000 was left in the apartment. The local district attorney said that it appeared that the killer and the victims knew each other, and that the murders were not random.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the deceased suspect in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, had previously described murder victim Brendan Mess as his best friend, though before Mess was murdered there had been animosity between Tsarnaev and Mess over Mess's "lifestyle". After the bombings and subsequent revelations of Tsarnaev's personal life, the Waltham murders case was reexamined in April 2013 with Tsarnaev as a new suspect. Authorities said Tsarnaev and his younger brother Dzhokhar Tsarnaev may have been responsible for the triple homicide, that forensic evidence connected them to the scene of the killings, and that their cell phone records placed them in the area. While police in the first investigation said that victims were killed on September 12, The Boston Globe, Boston Herald, and The Wall Street Journal reported that at least one relative of the victims believes that the killings took place on September 11.
In May 2013, Ibragim Todashev, a 27-year-old Chechen native and former mixed martial arts fighter who knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was shot and killed in Orlando, Florida, by law enforcement officers who had been interviewing him about the Waltham murders as well as the Boston Marathon bombings. The FBI has alleged that just before he was killed, Todashev made statements implicating both himself and Tamerlan Tsarnaev in the Waltham murders – saying that the initial crime was a drug robbery, and the murders were committed to prevent being identified by the victims.[