Bangladeshi couple found dead in US after suspected murder-suicide

  • New York Correspondent, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2020-09-28 15:10:53 BdST

bdnews24

A Bangladeshi-origin couple has been found dead in their home in the US state of Arizona after an apparent murder-suicide.

Police believe the man shot his wife dead before ending his own life.

The incident which took place in Phoenix city's Laveen on Sunday morning has caused a stir in the local community.

The couple have been identified as Abul Ahsan Habib, 52, and his wife Syeda Soheli Akter, 43, who had immigrated to the United States with their two sons and settled in Arizona in 2006. They are originally from Magura in Bangladesh.

Pheonix police are investigating the incident. However, members of the Bangladeshi diaspora believe the burden of unemployment during the coronavirus pandemic coupled with marital strife brought about the tragedy.

Habib had been working in a restaurant while Soheli ran a beauty parlour, according to Phoenix resident Mahbub Reza Rahim. But they both lost their jobs due to the pandemic.

"They were embroiled in an altercation and at one point, Soheli called the police. But Habib got out of the house before the police arrived. Police then asked Soheli to go to court the next day and get a protection order against her husband.”

Soheli's eldest son Hasib, 25, was at the house when the police arrived. But after the law enforcers left, Hasib went to a local shop to buy food and that is when Habib returned home again.

"Soheli was terrified and called her son to inform him about the matter. She then called the police again. Hasib quickly got back home after getting his mother's phone call while the police had reached before him," said Rahim.

"They found Habib and Soheli there with fatal gunshot wounds. The EMTs who arrived in an ambulance with the police declared both of them dead.”

Phoenix police spokesman Sergeant Tommy Thomson said the police operator heard two gunshots while talking to Soheli. Police rushed to the scene but could not prevent the deaths.

The pistol used in the murder was found lying next to Habib's body. According to police, Habib returned home shortly after Hasib left before shooting both Soheli and himself.

Many of Soheli's closest relatives live in Phoenix. His two sons want to bury their parents in the city. Relatives said that arrangements would be made for their burial after the autopsy is completed.