Report: Detroit Imam slain by FBI agents
suffered 21 gunshot wounds
‘The shocking details of the imam's autopsy
raise a number of disturbing questions that need
to be answered.’
Council on American-Islamic Relations
Over three months after the controversial shooting death
of Detroit-area religious leader Imam Luqman Ameen
Abdullah, the official
autopsy results (PDF,
released by the Wayne County Medical Examiner's Office
on February 1.
The report confirmed information previously reported by The
that Imam Abdullah died after suffering 21 gunshot
wounds in various parts of his body including
the abdomen, scrotum and back. According to family
members and media reports, a majority of the wounds were
below the waist. The imam was found dead at the scene
with his hands cuffed behind him.
The autopsy was actually completed in December 2009,
however, Dearborn police held up release of the autopsy
until their departmental investigation was finished.
This lead to widespread concern among community
activists and some advocacy groups of a cover-up by
local and federal law enforcement officials. Protesters
demonstrated outside Dearborn police headquarters
shortly after the results from the autopsy were
Since the Oct. 28 shooting, there have repeated calls
for an independent investigation into the FBI's actions
which led to the imam's death.
“The shocking details of the imam's autopsy raise a
number of disturbing questions that need to be
answered,” said Dawud Walid, executive director of
Michigan's chapter of the Council on American-Islamic
“First of all, did the FBI agents follow established
procedure when they shot the imam 21 times? How was the
imam shot in the back? Was it proper procedure to
handcuff either a dead body or a mortally wounded
suspect? If the agents found the imam alive following
the shooting, did they call for medical assistance? All
these questions need answers,” said Mr. Walid.
Another question that remains to be answered is, whether
a police dog was actually shot by Imam Abdullah as
claimed by the FBI, or is it possible that ricocheting
bullets fired by FBI agents hit the dog? FBI agents
cited the shooting of the dog as the reason for their
decision to use lethal force in firing at Imam Abdullah.
No information has been released regarding the type of
weapon Imam Abdullah allegedly used nor have any results
from ballistic tests been released to prove the dog was
in fact shot by the imam.
Imam Abdullah, 53, was gunned down Oct. 28 by FBI agents
conducting a raid on a warehouse in the Detroit suburb
of Dearborn. He was accused by the FBI of being the
leader of an alleged Islamic extremist separatist group
desiring to overthrow the government of the United
States as well as overseeing a criminal enterprise
involved in multiple federal offenses including weapons
violations and trafficking in stolen goods.
Recently, a benefit concert was held in Detroit for
Mujahid Carswell, one of Imam Abdullah's sons and one of
10 remaining defendants listed in the FBI's criminal
time, House Judiciary Chairman Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.)
was scheduled to participate in a Feb. 2 news conference
joined by a coalition of civil rights groups including
CAIR-MI, the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality,
National Action Network and lawyers representing the
family of the slain imam.