MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A jury has found a teenager guilty in the shooting deaths of three people at a Minneapolis market in January 2010.

Mahdi Ali, 18, was found guilty on three counts of first degree murder, one count of first degree premeditated murder, and two counts of second-degree murder.

“We got what we want and he got what he deserved,” said Fethi Mohammed, the brother of one of the victims.

Three people were killed during a hold-up at the Seward Market on the night of the crime — the store owner, along with his cousin and another customer.

The victims were Osman Jama Elmi, 28, of St. Paul; Mohamed Abdi Warfa, 30, of Savage; and Anwar Salah Mohammed, 31, of Brooklyn Park.

“It’s hard to measure the impact this has had on our lives, because it’s really immeasurable,” said Abdi Mohamed Warfa, first cousin of two of the victims. “We do think the verdict is just. Why do we think so? Well, when anyone can walk into a grocery store and in the span of 62 seconds take away three lives, they have no respect for the sanctity of humanity.”

Jury deliberations started Thursday after closing arguments were finished.

Before the jury went home on Thursday night, they asked to see the surveillance video from inside the store again. The state relied heavily on the video from the night the attempted robbery and murders took place.

“We feeling very sorry and very painful about what happened to the Seward Market families,” said Ali’s Aunt, Ayan Abukar.

Abukar added that she feels the verdict isn’t fair, since Ali was a juvenile when the murders happened. She said that Ali was a good boy growing up, who came to America from Somalia. His mother, Sainab Osman, echoed the same feelings in her native Somali language.

Prosecutors also had testimony of an 18-year-old accomplice who said he was with Ali when the crimes happened. In exchange for his testimony, the teen entered a plea agreement and will be going to prison.

Prosecutors said Ali started shooting when a customer interrupted a robbery, but Ali’s lawyers argued that he was not the shooter, and instead, it was the accomplice.

“I lost part of my life. My life is nothing without my husband,” said Chaltu Nur, the wife of one of the men killed.

Prosecutors said another key piece of evidence is the testimony from a former cellmate of Ali’s who said Ali confessed to the killings. And finally, victims’ blood was found on Ali’s pants.

“We, as a prosecution team, are pleased with the jury’s verdict this afternoon,” said Bob Streitz, Assistant Hennepin County Attorney.

Sentencing is set for Oct. 25. Ali will likely spend the rest of his life in prison, without the possibility of parole.

Comments (27)
  1. tom says:

    Could spend is a lot different than will spend!

    1. Pappione says:

      I was just going to type that Tom … They make it sound as though “Minnesota Nice” could be carried a little too far!

  2. just sayin says:

    Death penalty sounds better.

  3. David Ball says:

    Is’nt diversity grand !

  4. MARK says:

    Internet tough guy right here. Impressive!

    1. @Mark the Libby says:

      @MARK..better than being an internet Libby like you..Embracing all things multi cultural & diverse!

  5. TL the alligator says:

    …..i hope tis POS gets consecutive life sentences….he doesn’t deserve to live much less walk this earth as a free person ever again…..hope he enjoys the rest of his pathetic life locked up like the animal he is…..wonder if he’ll keep that stupid expression on his face when he enters the prison for the first time and all the hard cores get a gander at him.

  6. jack says:

    Wish we had the needle!

  7. Walking the line says:

    Now he will have a nice life of playing with his feces, faking mental illness, not understanding English just like the rest of the Somali population that’s incarcerated!!!

  8. rasputin says:

    Too bad our government won’t deport him back to that sh333hole.

  9. Joe from Mn. says:

    A prison should only hold a person untill the end of his or her trial. Then that person is set free or recieves his or her sentence. In this case it should be death. The sentence would be cared out with in three days. If there is enough proof to warrent an appeal they get one but only one

  10. somalia says:

    Death Penalty would be carried out….both of them and his lawyer too

    1. ez says:

      Why his lawyer? Don’t be ignorant!

  11. tom says:

    get a rope, MN has plenty of trees

    1. Somali turds says:

      Yeah, a rope at the end of a guillotine blade, of which I’d be happy to pull, then punt that ugly head right through the uprights. Useless schmuck…

  12. Little Tin God says:

    In this case, I’m sorry Minnesota doesn’t have the death penalty. I’m not sure I like the idea of supporting this a-hole for the rest of his miserable life.

  13. insignificant says:

    once again there are those who don’t understand that once a persons spirit leaves it’s habitation, all that’s left is everything corrupted,a most unreversible condition,eh?…and so the carcass of these ,now,animals should be incapsulted 6 feet under…

  14. ez says:

    Once again wcco makes a mess of things. He will likely spend the rest of his life in prison? why don’t they just report the facts. Fact, in MN a first degree murder conviction REQUIRES life without parole. Why don’t they just come out and say what it is?

    1. ez says:

      Ok, maybe they are right, this was not one of the crimes that requires life with out parole. I guess he could get out.

  15. Bruce says:

    The lowlife will get what’s coming to him

  16. Kevin says:

    We pay to bring this garbage here. We feed them, house them, educate them, and find them jobs. We are sued by them, they flood the Human RIghts Office with complaints. They tell you to your face that they hate America and they will someday take over the US. They blame Minnesotans for being mean to them, casuing them to form street gangs. They go back to fight with terror groups. They collect money for terror groups. And after all that we continue to bring them over in hoards….Ignorance breeds ignorance….

  17. Leroy says:

    Why did they pick Minnesota? There are 49 other States and the District of Columbia…

  18. Leroy says:

    Go away…WE DON”T WANT YOU HERE!!!

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