Closing statements heard in first trial for suspect accused of murdering Muslim men

Closing statements heard in first trial for suspect accused of murdering Muslim men

The first trial of Muhammad Syed – the man accused of shooting and killing three Muslim men in Albuquerque in 2022 – wrapped up with closing arguments Friday.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A verdict – that’s all that’s left in the trial of a suspect accused of killing three local Muslim men. A jury will start deliberating Muhammad Syed’s fate next week.

This is the first of three trials for Syed, who reportedly killed the victims in 2022. This first trial was focused on the death of Aftab Hussein, who was shot multiple times as he was getting out of his car in front of his house.

The state argued the evidence they presented is foolproof. They say they can place Syed at the scene of Hussein’s killing, thanks to his cell phone data. His car was also seen leaving the neighborhood after the shooting, and the bullets and shell casings that were found matched the gun Syed bought only a couple of weeks earlier.

“The only reason for going to this address was to kill Aftab Hussein, to test his AK-47 on Aftab Hussein,” said prosecutor Jordan Machin.

However, the defense claims police didn’t fully investigate everyone in Syed’s family. His attorneys claim his son owns a gun using the same type of ammo in Hussein’s murder – and police never tested Syed’s gun for DNA or fingerprints, claiming someone in his home could have taken the gun.

“How is that fair to Mr. Syed?” said Megan Mitsunaga, Syed’s defense attorney. “How is that fair to this community, to have law enforcement to pick and choose which evidence they want you to hear about? Which evidence they think fits their theory and ingores any evidence that does not?”

Closing arguments went right up until 5 p.m. Friday evening. The judge directed the jury not to discuss the case with anyone until they come back Monday to begin deliberations.