INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — An Indianapolis man and his son each received a prison sentence of 71 years after being convicted for the robbery and the murder of a 62-year-old man in 2016, Marion County prosecutors said Tuesday.
The jury handed down guilty verdicts Feb. 23 against Ziad Abd, 45, and his son Akram Abd, 22, after a nine-day trial in Marion Superior Court, Criminal Division 4.
“This conviction again underscores that successful prosecution is possible because of the willingness of a witness to come forward with information that was critical to identifying the suspects in this murder,” Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said in a news release. “We commend the investigators for tracking down leads and pursuing information that led to these convictions and substantial sentences.”
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department were called about 7 a.m. April 21, 2016, to the Airport Office Centre, 2346 South Lynhurst Drive, on a report of a deceased person, said a news release from the prosecutor’s office. The commercial complex is on the city’s west side.
Mohamed Mahmoud’s body was found next to a large trash bin with his wrists and ankles bound by duct tape. Additionally, the victim’s head was covered with a purple pillow case, which was taped around his neck. An autopsy revealed Mahmoud’s cause of death was asphyxiation.
On April 22, 2016, Mahmoud’s business Taxesmart was found unlocked, and the safe in the office was open and empty.
A search warrant of the home of the Abds revealed that they were preparing to move to Michigan after paying $35,000 in cash for a home in Detroit. Additionally, a fitted sheet was discovered in their residence that matched the pattern of the pillowcase that covered the victim’s head.
According to a witness, Ziad Abd worked in the same complex where Mahmoud’s body was found. The witness also told investigators that Ziad Abd was in financial trouble and was in Taxesmart on one occasion about 10 days before the murder. The same witness also identified Akram Abd as Ziad Abd’s son.
On the day the murder, video surveillance captured a white Ford Taurus entering the Airport Office Centre office complex and leaving from the area where the body was found. Investigators recovered additional video recorded from a building directly west of Taxesmart, which showed what appeared to be an identical vehicle parked near Mahmoud’s business with two occupants on the day before the murder. It was determined that Akram Abd drove the vehicle that appeared in the surveillance footage recorded on the night of the murder.