Muslim Man in Chicago Charged with Killing Wife, 3 Daughters

( – A Muslim man in Chicago has been charged with murdering his wife and three daughters. Police discovered the bodies of Majeda Kassem and her 25-year-old twin daughters Halema and Zahia, as well as 24-year-old Hanan, in the basement of the family home in Tinley Park after Maher Kassem called 911 to report that his wife had been shot. Officers told reporters at a January 22 press conference that Kassem subsequently admitted his guilt for what police describe as an “act of senseless domestic violence.”

Mrs. Kassem was shot seven times, and her daughters twice each, while their 19-year-old brother was present but was physically unharmed. Assistant State’s Attorney Scott Clark said Kassem complained that his wife treated him “like a dog,” which he resented because he worked for 40 years to give his family a better life. The family owned a local liquor store.

Tinley Park Mayor Michael Glotz said he was “deeply saddened” by the tragedy, while Itedal Shalabi of the Arab American Family Service claimed the killer’s Muslim faith does not condone his actions.

Media reports describe how the son awoke on a Sunday morning to hear shouting in the basement. He ran to see what was happening and found his father arguing with his siblings and later watched while Mr. Kassem aimed a gun at Mrs. Kassem and fired seven bullets into her body.

In court, police described arriving at the family home and speaking to Kassem, who told them, “They’re gone” and “I’m going to jail.” The 19-year-old son said his mother and two sisters initially tried to calm the situation while his father stomped up and down to and from the basement in a rage. At one point during the row, he heard gunshots and found that his father had shot his sisters in the head. All were pronounced dead at the scene. Tinley Park Police Chief Tom Tilton said the case was “very complex.”

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