Sketch released of suspect in killing of NY imam
QUEENS, NY – New York City police have released a sketch of the suspect they say fatally shot the leader of a mosque and a friend as they left afternoon prayers.
Police say witnesses described the shooter of 55-year-old Imam Maulama Akonjee and 64-year-old Thara Uddin as a man with a medium complexion, last seen wearing a dark shirt and blue shorts. Police released a sketch early Sunday of a dark-haired, bearded man wearing glasses.
Authorities say the shooter approached them from behind as they left the Al-Furqan Jame Masjid mosque in Queens shortly before 2 p.m. Saturday. Police say video surveillance showed the suspect then fled south on 79th Street with the gun still in his hand.
Police say they haven’t determined a motive, and that there’s no indication the men were targeted because of their faith. But members of the Bangladeshi Muslim community served by the mosque worry it could be a hate crime.
More than 100 people attended a rally Saturday night.