Suspect arrested in connection with murder of Muslim men in Albuquerque

  • A suspect is in custody in connection with the murders of four Muslim men in Albuquerque.
  • Police will release more details about the suspect at a press conference later this afternoon.
  • Naeem Hussain, Muhammad Afzaal Hussain and Aftab Hussain were killed in the last two weeks. Mohammad Ahmadi was shot in November.

Police in Albuquerque say a prime suspect is in custody in connection with the shooting deaths of four Muslim men in the city.

Naeem Hussain, Muhammad Afzaal Hussain and Aftab Hussain were killed in ambush in the last two weeks. They were all from Pakistan. Police believe a fourth killing – of Afghanistan-born Mohammad Ahmadi back in November – was also linked.

APD Chief Harold Medina tweeted just before 1 p.m. Tuesday that his officers tracked down a vehicle they believed was connected to the murders, and the driver of the vehicle was arrested.

Medina said the driver “is our prime suspect in the murders” and that more details would be released at a news conference later in the afternoon.

Muhammad Afzaal Hussain

Muhammad Afzaal Hussain and his brother.

Provided by Muhammad Imtiaz Hussain

Living in fear

The recent spate of killings has sparked fear among Muslims living in the city, a victim’s brother and a mosque official told Insider on Monday.

Muhammad Imtiaz Hussain, whose 27-year-old brother Afzaal Hussain was killed on August 1, told Insider that they had come to America from Pakistan in search of a better future for their family and loved the community they found in Albuquerque.

They felt safe walking alone at night or early in the morning, and had never been exposed to hate violence before.

In the wake of Afzaal Hussain’s murder, the brother feels unsafe and has moved his children between friends’ homes to try to keep them safe, he told Insider.

The 27-year-old, who worked as an urban planner for a city an hour north, walked out of his apartment and was shot in the head, his brother said.

The way he was killed was so brutal, he said. “We couldn’t put his head together.”

Now Imtiaz Hussain is about to try to move.

“I’m afraid for my safety and for my children. My father is very worried and is calling us to ‘come back,'” he said Monday.

Aneela Abad, general secretary of the Islamic Center of New Mexico, told Insider that it is particularly troubling how the three recent killings are linked to Ahmadi’s shooting nearly a year ago.

“We’re shocked that someone who lives here locally can lay low and just pop up all of a sudden and there’s three shootings in a row,” Abad said.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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