Locals remain confident in safety on the Square after fatal shooting
by Nikki Wiley
November 07, 2013 02:01 AM | 4965 views | 8 8 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Raouf Sanad
Raouf Sanad
MARIETTA — An accidental shooting death that took place on the Square has some locals unnerved, but they say they still have confidence in the safety of the area regarded as the city’s family friendly gathering place.

A 25-year-old man was shot dead Friday night in the kitchen of the Laziza eatery at 113 North Park Square next to The Strand Theatre when his gun accidentally fired.

Raouf Sanad, 63, owner of the restaurant, is charged with involuntary manslaughter, pointing a gun at another person and reckless conduct in the death of Wael Ali, who owned the firearm and had been showing it to Sanad in the restaurant’s kitchen.

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.

Ali was not an employee of the restaurant but was a close friend of Sanad’s.

Marietta Police Department spokesman David Baldwin couldn’t remember the last time a shooting took place on the Square.

“As far as an actual shooting right there on the Square, intentional or not, I can’t say if there ever was one,” Baldwin said.

Melissa Gault of east Cobb took to Glover Park in the center of the Square on Wednesday afternoon. It’s a scary situation, she said, but not one that she holds against the restaurant or the area.

“That could really happen to anyone,” Gault said.

Two police officers doing a normal patrol of the Square were standing outside of the Strand on Friday night and heard the gunshots. They responded immediately, Baldwin said.

Johnny Fulmer, who runs the weekend farmers market on the Square, praises Marietta police for their almost constant presence.

“It’s the best,” Fulmer said. “They’re here all the time.”

The shooting death is “most unusual,” Fulmer said, but is a “random happening.”

A weapon shouldn’t be in a public place, said Lavilla Walker, of Kennesaw, who was dining on Wednesday at an outdoor table at the Australian Bakery on the Square.

“Any time you have a weapon, you have the potential,” Walker said.

Georgia law allows firearms to be carried into restaurants provided the owner does not prohibit it.

Ali, who was killed in the incident, 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.

Ali remained the prime suspect in the case, though a mistrial was declared after 18 hours of unsuccessful jury deliberation and 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.

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Nathan Hale
November 08, 2013
Hookah bar? No wonder the name of the "restaurant" wasn't in the story.

The dead guy's Facebook page was scrubbed, not sure when. Of course, we are all racist haters for wondering what's going on over there. Sarah Palin had it correct when she said let them all kill each other and let Allah sort it out. It's the religion of peace, dontcha know.
November 08, 2013
While this article provides a little more information than the initial article, it is still lacking. For example, the initial article mentioned that the owner was being held by ICE, and this article makes not mention of it. If the paper decides to raise points that could lead to speculation, then the paper has a responsibility for follow through and either let us know what's going on or clear his name.

The paper is supposed to serve as a voice in matters like this. It should be the first place to get reliable, and thorough, information.
November 07, 2013
There is a lot of information missing from the article as it was likely hastily written shortly after the incident. I would like to point out that guns do not go off accidentally, nor do they point themselves at their target. This was certainly a deliberate act.

I am confused, was there more than one round fired or more? Did the shooter call for help and administer any first aid?

We, "The Man," and other fair skinned citizens may not pay as much attention to this because of the players involved. This is just my feeling. I would certainly like to know more as the investigation reveals the facts and fills in the pieces.
November 07, 2013
Phillip Goldstein owns the building that houses the Laziza Hooka bar and restaurant!!!!!

SPSU/KSU gets wide coverage, but a murder on the square in downtown & MDJ sweeps away coverage real quick. WONDER WHY ?....

There are so many questions about this murder on the square, that business in general, what's the secretism about??? It's a definite cover-up more in than one way. MDJ don't get political in who/what you cover, your Daddy never did!!!
Nathan Hale
November 07, 2013
Ms. Walker, you should re think your logic. It was not the weapon being in a public place, it was the men handling that weapon, likely no permit, training.

2007: deceased, after a lengthy series of getting into trouble with his twin brother was accused of stealing a military vehicle from Ft. Meade, MD and impersonating an MP officer. He possessed a stolen gun. He was fired from his job in a mall for stealing and then his twin was found beaten to death in the woods where they both grew up after he organized search parties but discouraged them from searching in the area where his brother was ultimately found murdered (he told friends he'd already searched the area). He was the primary suspect until he died, though got off on a technicality at trial in Maryland. Trouble followed this young man....or he created it. It was NOT the gun's fault that the men handling it were....less than qualified, reckless, you name the correct word....

November 07, 2013
Duh ! No connection here ? He murdered his twin comes to visit an old friend and bam he takes him out like they do in the old country. Justice is served.
E. DeLong
November 07, 2013
This is exactly how they do it in the Middle East.

November 07, 2013
That Efe's place, whatever they call it now, has always been extremely sketchy. Why is a fatal shooting in its kitchen being swept under the rug?

What is really going on here, and how are our local officials involved with the situation such that they basically ignore this and brush it off?

Are these guys related to the gentleman who tried for so long to violate our building ordinances on Franklin Rd at the South Loop? Or are they related to the gentleman who continues to try to violate building ordinances a couple doors down from Efe's on the Square?

What is their connection that wins them an instant "it was just an accident" from The Man despite the histories of the involved?

MDJ, quit sitting over at Lockheed trying to get the gossip on KSU/SPSU and go dig up the dirt that this dead guy is buried six feet under!

He's DEAD, shot in the FACE, and nobody cares.
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