SPD investigates double murder as possible hate crime
When will people here in south Seattle live without fear?
Those were the questions last night at the South Seattle Crime Prevention Council.
“I think people have had it and it’s not getting any better and it won’t get any better because city policies are causing our problems here,” South Seattle Crime Prevention Council President Pat Murakami said.
Murakami and more than a hundred of her neighbors crowded into a monthly meeting on the heels of a double murder.
Ahmed Said, 27, and another man were gunned down early Sunday morning in the Central District’s Leschi neighborhood.
“We have two young men who have no criminal history. They appear to be very upstanding citizens and just victims of a very tragic incident,” Seattle Police Assistant Chief Carmen Best said.
One of the men was African American; the other was East African, Somali, and one of the two was gay.
Police arrested 29-year-old Matalepuna Malu.
He’s not yet been charged but is being held on a federal warrant and a new assault case in Seattle.
Interim Seattle Police Chief Harry Bailey credits neighbors, with helping his investigators make the arrest.
“When people come out and want to get involved it helps us make arrests much quicker,” Bailey said.
Tuesday, police located a car of one of the victims — a Mitsubishi Galant — in south Seattle, near the corner of Wabash Avenue and South Cloverdale Street.
They found evidence inside; they know it had been moved but they don’t know who moved it.
Motive for the killings is still unknown.
“I don’t want to guess what the motive is because we don’t know. Obviously they’re investigating all angles including the possibility that it was a hate crime,” Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said.
Another possibility is that this may have been a carjacking; police say they just don’t know. They are searching the car and are asking for the public help to identify any other suspects and get them off the street.