New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a Democrat, has reportedly bolstered the police presence in the state's largest city, after four Muslim men were shot and killed over the last few months — in a series of homicides that might be connected.
Albuquerque police officials are now seeking the public's help to identify a vehicle that may be linked to each homicide.
The car in question: An apparent Volkswagen Jetta, dark gray or silver four-door with dark tinted windows.
"We have a very, very strong link," Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller said Sunday. "We have a vehicle of interest. ... We have got to find this vehicle."
In a tweet from late Sunday, the Albuquerque Police Department wrote: "WANTED: APD releases photos of a vehicle of interest in the shootings of 4 Muslim men. If you have any information about this vehicle please contact Crime Stoppers at (505)-843-STOP," while linking to photos of the suspected vehicle.
According to the Albuquerque Journal, on Nov. 7 of last year, Mohammad Ahmadi, 62, was killed behind a halal market he co-owned with his brother.
Last month, NPR reported that Muhammed Afzaal Hussain, 27, and Aftab Hussein, 41 — who were both Pakistan natives and belonged to the same mosque — were killed within a brief time window in Albuquerque.
And on Friday night, another male Muslim — 25-year-old Naeem Hussain, according to Axios — was killed by gunfire within the city.
"We will not stop in our pursuit of justice for the victims and their families and are bringing every resource to bear to apprehend the killer or killers — and we will find them," Governor Lujan Grisham said.
The rash of deadly shootings among Muslims have stoked fears within that community, with some reportedly leaving New Mexico before the investigation concludes.
Ahmad Assed, president of the Islamic Center of New Mexico, shared his community's fears on CNN.
"Incredibly terrified. Panicked. Some people want to move from the state until this thing is over. Some people have moved from the state," said Assed. "Businesses are closing ... early. Students won't leave their homes."
Local detectives declined to confirm if the four Muslims were killed in the same manner. They're also reluctant to say whether any of the four homicides constitutes a "hate crime," until they've pinpointed a suspect and determined a motive.
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