At 7:45 p.m., the Somali and Seward communities came together to mourn three victims shot 24 hours earlier inside the Seward Market and Halal Meats, at 25th and East Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis. It was cold, with a wind chill below zero, but word spread very fast that the community should come together.
The night before, two men entered the store and gunned down two cousins who owned the store, and a customer. Mahad Warfa was off, but had brought tea over to his cousin, Abdifatah Warfa, who was running the store. Anwar Mohammed was the customer, and he’d just ducked in on his way home from work.
Somali leaders and the mayor pleaded for peace, and for anyone with information to come forward to solve the crime. Mayor Rybak came to the scene for the second night in a row. He said it was personal: his mom was robbed in a store less than a mile a way, and had a gun held to her head years ago. He said the community came together to solve that crime, and he wanted that to happen now. Also in attendance was Cam Gordon of the City Council representing the Seward neighborhood.
Looking through the closed store’s window, I saw all the usual trappings of a convenience store. Chips and coolers, and then down one isle chaos, with a rack emptied to the floor, and then by the door a horrific scene of pools of blood still on the floor. Many who came up to the window, stood in shock at the scene.
Last year, Minneapolis had 19 homicides, down from the high of 97 in 1995. But already this year in Minneapolis we’ve had 4.
A Trust Fund has been set up for the Warfa family of the store at Wells Fargo: Account: # 2655528699