MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Anoka County Sheriff’s Office said one person has been charged in connection with the death of a 17-year-old Fridley boy that occurred early Monday morning.
Nineteen-year-old Zakariya Hassan Ahmed, of Robbinsdale, has been charged with one count of murder in the second degree with intent but not premeditated.
According to the criminal complaint, just after 1 a.m. Monday police responded to a call of a male lying in the street on the 1300 block of Meadowmoor Drive NE in Fridley. The caller said the male was lying half in the street and half in the grass.
Upon arrival, police found the male, later identified as Mohanned Abdul Hafiz, suffering a gunshot wound to the neck. He was declared dead on the scene.
Through further investigation, police learned that around 11 p.m. Sunday evening Hafiz had told some family members he was going to meet someone nearby to sell some items, something his family said he did often. He was not heard from again until his body was located.
According to the criminal complaint, a neighbor told police around 10:50 p.m. they heard what they believed to be two gunshots.
The neighbor proceeded to look out the window that overlooks Meadowmoor Drive and reported seeing two or three males getting into a silver or grey RAV4 SUV. The neighbor said the car sped off with the headlights off.
The criminal complaint states a cellphone was found on the victim.
Messages on the phone suggest Hafiz was meeting with the person, later identified as Ahmed, to sell marijuana.
Officers were able to determine the identify of Ahmed as he had provided the cellphone number seen on Hafiz’s phone as a contact number in a previous report Ahmed had filed regarding a silver RAV4.
According to the criminal complaint, two video cameras from a nearby business corroborated the neighbor’s statements, showing a SUV traveling eastbound on Meadowmoor Drive without headlines.
On Tuesday, Ahmed and his mother went to the Minneapolis police to report his RAV4, with the same license plate as seen on the security camears, stolen.
Ahmed told police he was playing basketball in the park Sunday and had placed his keys on the side of the court. During the game, his keys and car were stolen.
Ahmed also told police his cellphone had also been stolen few days prior.
The criminal complaint states, Ahmed told police after playing basketball he went to Minnehaha Falls around 11 p.m.
Police pulled phone records and tracked Ahmed’s phone to two towers near where Hafiz’s body was found.
Additionally, the criminal complaint states that early Wednesday morning police responded to a call of a vehicle fire. Upon arrival they learned it was the RAV4 Ahmed had reported stolen. Witnesses who called in the fire reported seeing someone run from the scene.
Ahmed appeared in Anoka County District Court Thursday morning. His bail was set at $1 million.
His next court appearance is set for Aug. 3.