An American arrested on suspicion of killing a 17-year-old African American in an Arizona convenience store last week said he killed the teenager, because he was listening to rap music.
Police said the teenager did not say or do anything to threaten or provoke his killer. The victim was identified as Elijah Al-Amin. He will be 18 in two weeks time.
According to USA Today, the suspect, Michael Paul Adams, 27, admitted stabbing the teenager at 1:42 a.m. Thursday after he heard him playing rap music in his vehicle in a parking lot at a Circle K in Peoria, Arizona, according to police records filed in Arizona Superior Court.
Adams had just been released from the Arizona State Prison Complex in Yuma on Tuesday, according to the Arizona Department of Corrections.
Adams told police rap music makes him feel “unsafe” because he had been attacked by people who listen to rap music in the past, records say. He also said people who listen to rap music are a threat to him and the community.
The suspect said he felt threatened by the music — not the teen himself — so he needed to be “proactive rather than reactive,” police records said.
Surveillance footage shows the teen walking into the convenience store and Adams walking in a few seconds later. Adams walked around the store before lunging at the teen, according to records.
Adams used his pocketknife to stab the teen in the back and slit his throat.
The teenager died in the hospital.
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How the killing happened
Al Amin had finished working his shift at Subway at 11:30 p.m. on the fateful Thursday and visited his girlfriend before heading to the Circle K (a convenience store chain offering a wide variety of products for people on the go).
Around 1:42 a.m. Surveillance footage from the convenience store shows Al-Amin walking into the store, followed by Adams a few seconds later, reported the Republic.
After Adam allegedly stabbed the teenager, Al-Amin ran out of the store where he collapsed near the gas tanks. According to authorities, He was rushed to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead around 2:05 a.m. on Thursday.
After a brief search, the cops claim they found Adams covered in blood and reportedly admitting he was “involved” in the heinous slaying