MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A teen who was found guilty last month for the robbery and triple murder at Seward Market in Minneapolis has been sentenced to three consecutive life sentences, without the possibility of parole.

Mahdi Ali, 18, received his sentencing Monday morning for the shooting deaths of three people in January 2010. The judge said it was his intention that Ali never be let out of prison.

When the judge asked Ali if he had anything to say for himself, Ali remained quiet.

Several family members of the victims were in tears at the courthouse on Monday. They held up photos of the victims and said this case has taken a toll on their families.

A cousin of the two victims, Abdi Warfa, said the family feels they got what they wanted, and Ali got what he deserved.

“The fact that he has no emotions, through the trial and today when he was sentenced, he had not a single emotion or response to what happened,” Warfa said. “It shows you how crucial it was that he be sentenced to a life with the possibility of release. So we’re happy with that.”

Family members described Ali as cold-hearted, greedy, vicious and a man who has no respect for human life.

Ali’s attorney Frederick Goetz, said he was not surprised by the sentence.

“The case will now be resolved at the next level, which we always knew where it would end up, whether that be at the Minnesota Supreme Court, or the U.S. Supreme Court, that’s where it’s headed,” Goetz said.

NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Susie Jones Reports

Goetz has insisted all along that Ali was 15 years old on the night he committed the murders, and argues that it would be cruel and unusual punishment to sentence someone to life in prison without parole for a crime committed at that age.

His request to have a trial to determine Ali’s age, beyond a reasonable doubt, was denied by Judge Peter Cahill.

Despite that, he believes the issue of juvenile crime needs to be addressed.

“I think this is an issue of national importance, that will ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court,” he said.

Goetz told the court that who we are at the age of 15 is very different from who we are later in life, and for that reason, a juvenile should never be sentenced to life without parole.

“Juveniles are not adults, in so many ways,” he said. “And to deny that just because a crime happens to be horrific is to really be ignorant to the realities of what it means to be a juvenile rather than an adult.”

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

Osman Jama Elmi, 28, of St. Paul; Mohamed Abdi Warfa, 30, of Savage; and Anwar Salah Mohammed, 31, of Brooklyn Park were killed in the hold-up and shooting.

Ahmed Ali also admitted to helping in the robbery. In exchange for his testimony, the teen entered a plea agreement and will also be going to prison, likely for 18 years.

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

Comments (43)
  1. TL the alligator says:

    ….i hope this POS gets the maximum time allowed by law…..actually, he doesn’t deserve to EVER walk as a free man again the rest of his worthless life….its just too dam bad Minnesota does not have the death penalty. As a follow up i also submit that we deport his entire family and extended family back to where they came from.

    1. just sayin says:

      I couldn’t agree more. I wish they’d put that to a vote.

    2. WhatBS says:

      Yo TL “only a fool and an imbecile would agree with you and think like you…..his sister and brother didn’t do anything to compromise this whackos life….he did it to himself. ”
      Sound familiar? Your words from a different post …. Review with me again why his family should be deported.

      1. me says:

        Because they were complicit in RAISING this POS. They CREATED the problem & allowed it to grow instead of smothering it in its crib.

        1. jackactionhero says:

          Dumbest Comment of the Day Award Winner right here!

        2. me & TL right, but wrong says:

          you can’t have it both ways.

          There is NO PROOF his siblings caused this problem – parents? Perhaps they were negligent. Then again, it takes a village to raise a child, so I guess you are responsible, too.

          1. me says:

            Beep – try again – I would give every Somali a RETROACTIVE abortion. Nuke the entire country – solve the piracy, terrorism and famine in big boom. And then finish off the ones we have here

      2. josie says:

        Yo WhatBS, you are in the minority, the majority of American citizens do not want Immigrants coming. We cannot afford them any longer, so the more leaving, the happier we are.

        1. u don't speak for me says:

          speak for yourself, Josie.

    3. adding says:



    4. jackactionhero says:

      The Somali & Muslum Community are basically a peaceful people..Statistically their are very very few that commit criminal offenses..I’m not ready to judge the entire culture based on the actions of this young man..He should be parole-eligible some day..I extend my sorrow to the Somalian Community, this must be tough on them.

  2. Billy Bob says:

    This all fits in with the 70 virgins belief! The exception being…..he will be the virgin….and 70 of his prison “buddies” will tag him…….Oh how I love a good plot!!!

  3. josie says:

    Send them all home, they have no respect for our laws, values and love for America.

  4. Ready says:

    The rope is swinging as I look t it
    It’ll work well

  5. Paula says:

    Why not just deport hi? That would be way cheaper than, then keeping him in prison.

  6. Erkyl says:

    I agree Kevin! On another note, will be coming to your trailer for your ‘coming out of the closet’ ‘ain’t my diversity grand’ celebration tonight. Are you going as a pirate or just keeping your factory outfit on from work? See you then!

    1. Blue colar all the way. says:

      Something wrong with being a factory worker?? Are you some spoiled rich kid who never worked before and think your SH#T don’t stink?

      1. Factory owner says:

        Keep peddling! Never worked a day in my life. Trust fund takes care of that. I have the the real girls to Kevin. Not the pigs you dream to date. Keep peddling lose! No rosk for me either!

    2. Kevin says:

      I am going as your mothers secret lover…..not really a costume though…she says hi…..well I think thats what she said…hard to understand her at the moment…if you know what I mean…

  7. just sayin' says:

    Can we deport Kevin?

  8. xxx says:

    Lets see. 50 years in jail until he dies at $40,000 per year – paid for by the MN taxpayers = $2 million dollars.

    A 38 slug in the back of the head is about 50 cents.

    What is a good way to reduce the state defecit?

    1. just sayin says:

      I’d be fine with that…

      1. So would I says:

        Me too … plus as many of his pals are there are bullets available.

        1. Kevin says:

          Good God…I say “Aint diversity grand” and I get censored….you talk about putting bullets into someones head…and its game on….aint CCO grand?

  9. Special Agent Dale Cooper says:

    Someone’s gonna relieve his big giant jihad up his you know where. Man, I can hear the techno music now. AHHH-hahahahahahah!!! 3 on 1 handicap match!

    1. jackactionhero says:

      Someone has seen too many movies…

  10. Rags says:

    An adherent of the ‘religion of peace’ committing murders? Who’d a thunk? Let’s bring them all here.

    1. Special Agent Dale Cooper says:

      So sayeth Michelle Bachman…. LOL
      (Come on – you can laugh!)

  11. j speedbag 64 says:

    teen…this guy looks 30……..he’s a good reason we should have the death penalty….

  12. Richard Head says:

    Omar Jamal has been kinda quiet lately. Might be challenging for him to run his mouth when both parties in this case are Somali, murderer, and victims. Ever wonder where his income originates?

  13. Wake Up says:

    I believe has age should not have any part in this – the story basically tries to infer that he was only 15 and hence didn’t know what he was doing – WRONG – All I can say is if you can’t do the time don’t do the crime – I only wish this state had the death penalty – why should he be able to live when his victims weren’t given that choice.

  14. Rags says:

    That face of his says it all.

  15. Tarik Ibn Ziyad says:

    This is an affront to Islam and a travesty unto Allah. Woe be unto those who mock the word of the Prophet (PBUH ). Mahdi Ali is the vessel of his will. Those infidels who brought this injustice will someday weep as the streets run with the blood of the unbelievers .

      1. Dale Gribble says:

        You’ve done now, buddy. Barack Husssien Obammy and the UN are bringing Sharia law to Minnesota, with Keith Ellison as the new Caliph of Minneapois, and you just put yourself on their list.

  16. Rags says:

    I’m going to dress up as a Somali for Halloween. Scare the daylights out of people as I hit all the bars.

  17. Kevin says:

    One down….32000 to go….

  18. j speedbag 64 says:

    tarik lbn zwad allah can eat pig nuts,you better go to the store i think your foodstamps are on…….mahdi ali waa waaa waaa,don’t forget you are only here because a few lousy senators felt sorry for your pityful country……

  19. Have fun says:

    Bend over and enjoy the pork

  20. Enjoy says:

    He will have plenty of time in prison to bend over and enjoy the pork

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