Officials: Man shot dead on Square
by Nikki Wiley
November 06, 2013 12:00 AM | 9532 views | 16 16 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Raouf Sanad
Raouf Sanad
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MARIETTA — A man thought by Maryland officials to have murdered his twin was killed on the Square when police say the owner of a local restaurant accidentally fired a gun in the kitchen area.

Raouf Sanad, 63, owner of Laziza at 113 North Park Square next to The Strand Theatre, is charged with involuntary manslaughter, pointing a gun at another person and reckless conduct in the death of Wael Ali, which occurred Friday at about 10:52 p.m. at the Mediterranean restaurant.

Sanad is accused of pointing a black semi-automatic handgun at Ali and pulling the trigger, believing the safety was on, and killing Ali, according to the arrest warrant.

The gun belonged to Ali, said Officer David Baldwin, spokesman for the Marietta Police Department, who is a “very, very, very close family friend” and was showing Sanad a firearm in the kitchen of the

restaurant.

Ali was not an employee of Laziza.

Baldwin said Sanad was “careless” and pointed the gun toward Ali, who was hit in the front of his throat.

Ali was pronounced dead at the scene.

Baldwin said the bullet did not exit the victim’s body and no customers or employees were in danger.

He would not say what caliber of bullet was fired from the handgun.

Quick response from police

Two Marietta police officers were doing a routine patrol of the Square and were outside of the theater next door when they heard the gunshot. Baldwin said the officers rushed in, secured the scene and talked to witnesses who confirmed it was a “tragic accident.”

Jail records indicate Sanad lives in Alpharetta and remains in jail on a $20,000 bond.

Sanad is being held for the federal Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.

“More often than not it does mean they’re here illegally,” Col. Don Bartlett of the Cobb Sheriff’s Office said of the ICE hold. He said there can be other circumstances apart from entering the country illegally that pique ICE’s interest.

Hysteria on the Square

Christine Costello, a waitress at Willie Rae’s, was working at the restaurant that is a block west of Laziza Friday night and heard the commotion that followed the shooting.

“I was outside and about 10 cop cars pulled through at once,” Costello said.

A crowd soon gathered outside the restaurant while multiple emergency vehicles surrounded the Square.

“Girls are hysterically crying,” Costello said.

It’s “alarming,” she said, that a shooting — accidental or not — can take place anywhere, even in public.

David Reardon, owner of Shillings restaurant on the Square, said he has never seen a shooting take place on the Square in the more than 30 years that he has been in business.

Ali moved to metro Atlanta last year after being tried in Howard County, the Maryland county between Baltimore and Washington, D.C., in the murder of his twin brother in 2007, according to the Baltimore Sun.

A mistrial was declared after 18 hours of unsuccessful jury deliberation, and though Ali remained the prime suspect in the case, prosecutors said they would no longer pursue murder charges.

The body of Ali’s twin, 19-year-old Wasel Ali, was found on Aug. 27, 2007, in a wooded area of Columbia. He suffered a neck injury and died of asphyxiation after several minutes of pressure having been applied to his neck.

Comments
(16)
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IsThisInvestigativeJ
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November 06, 2013
Is it just me or does this article raise a lot more questions than it answers about this incident? If this store owner is here illegally, then how did he get a business license? While the gun may not have been his, he was possessing it during the time of the incident, so shouldn't one of our many gun laws be applied here as an added charge? Was the victim wanted by the Maryland police? How can you say that no employees or patrons were in danger when there was an alleged murderer in the restaurant with a loaded gun?

On another note, how is this place still in business?
to IsThisInvestigati
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November 06, 2013
Yes.You are hitting all the "Red Flags". It may be that he was not the owner, but the owner doesn't want to be known. And who "owns" the building, since all the buildings are owned by only a few old Marietta-ians, the rents are quite steep, how did this guy get "vetted" so to speak.

There are so many questions about this that it looks almost like a cover up.

The bullet could have hit someone thru the wall, this is just STRANGE, someone is being covered.
In The Know
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November 06, 2013
The Laziza Hooka Bar and Restaurant is owned by Phillip Goldstein and family.

jbgksu
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November 06, 2013
No desrespect but before you go commenting on things try to put yourself in there shoes if you were innocent would you want people being negative... I used to work for this family and have actuallying gotten really close to them, the sanads are great people.. so let me answer your questions since you have so many and as politely as possible.. 1st he is not here illegally he came here the correct way with a work visa. The many gun laws don't apply bc it was an honest accident and he has many peopor that will speak on his behalf, I also.am friends with the victim and know that no he was not wanted the case was done. And the can say that no one was in danger bc one he isn't a murderer, and two if the employees thought they were in danger then why the hell did they come in for there shift today.. Ali was a great man, and M. Sanad is too. He would never even hurt a fly and woul. Give the shirt on his back to someone in greater need.. I never met anyone so kind and caring of someone they barely even know. But that is how he is. And he treated Ali And everyone else like they were apart of his family, and even though you think negative things about him and are wishing he would get charged with more if he met you he would respect your opinion and pray for nothing but the best for you.. He truly is a good man and if I didn't think so I would have not kept in contact with the family after leaving the job.
Marietta Taxpayer
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November 06, 2013
He was killed by his own gun. What's the problem?
who was good guy?
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November 06, 2013
The gun used to shoot Ali in the neck belonged to Ali, but Sanad allegedly fired that gun. So who was the Good Guy With The Gun? Was it Ali or Sanad? I AM SO CONFUSED

Given the issues with that restaurant maybe some of the $68 million bond could be used to purchase and raze it.

Like the Greek place, nobody eats there more than once, so what gives? What REALLY goes on there, especially now that somebody got shot to death in one of these "what gives" places?
jbgksu
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November 06, 2013
They are both very good men. May my friend ali rip and may my friend and former boss get the freedom he deserves. It was an honest mistake
anonymous
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November 06, 2013
Who knew a "Hookah bar" was on the square?

And the fact that the "owner" was an illegal & wanted by immigration?

A potential murder only gets told to the citizens after 4 days???

Is this a stinky story or what?

If you lay down with dogs, you'll wake up with fleas. (That really happens).

Retiree1
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November 05, 2013
How does an illegal immigrant so openly and publicly own a business in our city, our county, our country???
MariettaResident786
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November 06, 2013
Where in this article does it say he is an illegal immigrant?
to Retiree1
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November 06, 2013
He is being held by ICE Immigration Customs Enforcement Federal officials........

Also The AJC (Atlanta Newspaper) has a different article about this news event......
jbgksu
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November 06, 2013
He isn't illegal, and I actually for a fact know that bc I worked for them
Retiree1
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November 07, 2013
To "786": This is where in the article:

"Sanad is being held for the federal Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.

“More often than not it does mean they’re here illegally,” Col. Don Bartlett of the Cobb Sheriff’s Office said of the ICE hold. He said there can be other circumstances apart from entering the country illegally that pique ICE’s interest." This indicates that he is likely an illegal immigrant, which raised my question. Do read the articles before commenting....

Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal - Officials Man shot dead on Square

imsg
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November 12, 2013
He is not guilty, I got to know sanad. He is a genuinely good person. Truly, I helped him with the restaurant he worked very hard for it day and night I was there with him a lot of those days helping this man with a dream for his restaurant.... cause his wife is an awesome cook. Very generous people. I know he will be ok. he's not illegal, they may want to find something but will only find out that this was truly an accident.

Good will overpower all the things people want to perceive wrong about him.
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