The gunmen killed the two men in broad daylight.
Police have charged Oscar Morel, 35, with the murder of Imam Maulama Akonjee, 55, and his associate Thara Uddin, 64. Fox News reports:
Oscar Morel, 35, was charged with two counts of second-degree murder and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon, police said. It wasn’t immediately clear if he had an attorney who could comment on the charges.
Morel, who police said hit a bicyclist with his SUV just 10 minutes after Saturday’s shooting in Queens, was taken into custody late Sunday night, said the New York Police Department’s chief of detectives, Robert Boyce.
NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce described how they nabbed Morel:
Boyce said police found the vehicle and monitored it until the person emerged about 10 p.m. Sunday. When detectives approached the car, Boyce said the man then rammed their car.
Boyce said the 36-year-old Hispanic male was there eight minutes prior to the shooting and that a motive has not yet been determined. A search warrant has been obtained for his home in East New York, Brooklyn.
They received a search warrant for his house where they found a revolver and “clothes similar to those being worn in a surveillance video that showed the gunman.”
Earlier the police do not believe the murderer targeted the men over their faith. They do not have a motive, but police said they “were trying to determine whether an earlier dispute at the mosque led to the shooting.”
From The New York Daily News:
Sources pointed to an ongoing feud between Muslims and Hispanics in the neighborhood, saying the shooting may have been payback after a group of Muslims allegedly attacked some Hispanics a few weeks earlier.
Cops have established is that at 1:50 p.m. Saturday, the assassin quickly approached Akonjee and Uddin and shot them both in the head at close range. The double killing came just moments after prayers concluded at the Al-Furqan Jame Mosque.
Akonjee had $1,000 on him, but the murderer did not take the money, which eliminates robbery as a motive.
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