Christian convert kills Kansas City teen
Driving an SUV bearing a religious hate message, a Christian convert – who had allegedly been threatening members of the the local Islamic community – ran down and killed a 15-year-old Muslim boy outside a mosque in Kansas City.
According to this report, the victim, Abdisamad Sheikh-Hussein, was a sophomore at Staley High School in Kansas City, and a Muslim of Somali descent.
The attacker, Ahmed H Aden, 34, (inset above) has been charged with murder for mowing down the teen. Sources described Aden as a Somali Christian who converted from Islam.
The victim was struck down after he had just finished Thursday evening prayers at a mosque.
Aden also faces additional counts of armed criminal action, leaving the scene of an accident and unlawful use of a weapon in the death of Sheikh-Hussein.
Aden is alleged to have frequently made violent threats against worshippers at the Somali Center mosque.
Members of the Muslim community told reporters on Friday that in the weeks before the crash, worshippers said they saw Aden’s black SUV painted with threatening messages at the center and cruising around a nearby shopping area.
Sergeant Bill Mahoney with KCPD said:
It became pretty clear that this was not an accidental crash, there is a considerable amount of evidence that leads us to believe it was intentional.
Police said the teen was standing outside a Toyota, about to get in, when the driver of the SUV appeared to intentionally swerve towards him. Reports indicate both of the boy’s legs were severed as a result.
This report adds that Aden fled from the scene after the incident, and waved a machete and what appeared to be a gun at people in the area. He was taken into custody a short time later.
Aden initially told police he lost control of his vehicle. He later told police he was looking for four men who threatened to kill him.
Aden said he thought a man standing outside a vehicle in the area was one of the men who threatened to kill him, and he turned his vehicle toward the parked vehicle and struck the person, court documents said.
Aden said he did not want to kill the 15-year-old boy but he thought he was one of the people who had threatened him, court documents said.
Prosecutors have requested a bond of $250,000.
Moussa Elbayoumy, the Kansas Chairman of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said members of the targeted mosque had reported recent threats against the community posted on Facebook, and an incident in which the attacker drew a gun on Somali Muslims, to the police. He said:
We understand this person is a known person to the community and had made several threats to the community in the past few months. The local police were informed of these threats … The police came and investigated, and as a matter of fact that young man who died is one of the people interviewed by the police.
We are not sure what the police did, if anything. Did they take these threats seriously and give some protection to the community in the light of these threats? That’s what we want to know.
The first-degree murder charge filed Friday carries a potential sentence of life in prison without parole. Prosecutors say it is too early in the investigation to say if the death penalty may be considered.
In addition to state charges, Aden is also the target of a federal civil rights investigation.