Bombing suspect sparred with Providence boxer

Tamerlan Tsarnaev

A Providence boxer once sparred with one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects.

Jason Estrada is understandably unnerved when he thinks about how a man accused in the bombing fought him in the ring.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev showed some promise as a boxer and dreamed of going pro.

Estrada told NBC 10 that Tsarnaev came to his Big Six Boxing Academy about four times in about six weeks in 2011. He trained and fought against other boxers. But after a while, Tsarnaev just stopped showing up and never moved up in the boxing world.

Estrada said Tsarnaev joked around a lot and seemed like a happy man, but he was serious when it came to fighting.

And there was one thing that stood out to Estrada that he didn't understand.

"And the other thing that got me was he came here by himself. Usually, fighters don't come to a gym without, at least, a coach," Estrada said Monday. "He came by himself."

Estrada and the academy's owner said they never heard from Tsarnaev again. They said they were shocked when they saw his picture on television.

Tsarnaev was killed Thursday night in a shootout with police.