When the younger brother, Dzhokhar, was forced to go inside the Shell Food Mart to pay, older brother Tamerlan put his gun in the door pocket to fiddle with a navigation device — letting his guard down briefly after a night on the run. Danny then did what he had been rehearsing in his head. In a flash, he unbuckled his seat belt, opened the door, stepped through, slammed it behind, and sprinted off at an angle that would be a hard shot for any marksman.
“F---!” he heard Tamerlan say, feeling the rush of a near-miss grab at his back, but the man did not follow. Danny reached the haven of a Mobil station across the street, seeking cover in the supply room, shouting for the clerk to call 911.
His quick-thinking escape, authorities say, allowed police to swiftly track down the Mercedes, abating a possible attack by the brothers on New York City and precipitating a wild shoot-out in Watertown that would seriously wound one officer, kill Tamerlan, and leave a severely injured Dzhokhar hiding in the neighborhood.
One of the more compelling details in the dramatic events surrounding the hunt for the Boston Marathon bombing suspects is that they allegedly carjacked a guy's Mercedes-Benz near MIT and then, mysteriously, considering their apparent willingness to kill, pushed the man out of the car, shaken but uninjured, at a gas station. Tarek Ahmed, who was working behind the counter at the station, said a young man — white, about 20 to 25 years old — ran in screaming, "Call the police! Call the police! These people are trying to kill me!" Ahmed thought the guy was drunk and didn't believe him until police arrived. "It just sounded very crazy," he said