A Black man was shot three time outside of a restaurant in downtown Manchester, New Hampshire believes his assailant, who is Arab, was outraged because the man called him out for appropriating Black culture.
“I exiled him from Black culture,” 48-year-old Sean Brown told the Union Leader. “I told him ‘You’ll never be me — you’re banished from hip-hop.’” The South Bronx native said white artists who cashed in on hip-hop culture haven’t given his neighborhood due credit. The incident took place outside of the USA Chicken and Biscuit restaurant where he used to work. Brown sustained internal injuries that required multiple surgeries.
On May 10, Brown went into the restaurant to pick up his final paycheck after calling ahead of time. Zabayullah Qahir, 29, the son of the restaurant owner, reportedly kept him waiting for approx. 30 minutes. Qahir has recently fired Brown according to police reports. Brown went inside the restaurant, asked for his money then went back outside.
According to Brown, Qahir came outside told him he wasn’t getting his money, and used racial slurs. Brown got upset, and accused Qahir of appropriating Black culture by mimicking their slang, cadence and gestures. Brown taunted him for selling chicken and called him a coward.
Brown said Qahir attempted to punch him but missed. Then when Brown tried to walk away, Qahir informed him to wait while he entered the restaurant. When he came back he had a firearm in his hand and fired twice. Brown says Qahir walked up to him while he was on the ground and fired another time. Several people witnessed the shooting according to police reports. A witness told police a man identified as Qahir used slurs to address the man he was arguing with.
A DoorDash driver in the restaurant at the time of the incident said Qahir told him to “Get out of my way,” when he attempted to stop him from retuning outside with the weapon.
“He and another person in the store told him to stop but they did not intervene any further because he appeared extremely mad and was nervous about what might happen if he tried to stop him” he said. “Qahir then stepped outside the restaurant and, without saying a word, shot the victim.”
Once police arrived in response to reports of shots fired, first responders transported him to Elliot Hospital. Brown was hit in the chest, abdomen, and leg. He has since underwent two surgeries to repair damage to his diaphragm, small intestine and pancreas. Brown has been released from the hospital.
Qahir faces three first-degree assault charges, his attorney says his client acted in self-defense. Detective Jack Wagoner said the witness statements contradict the self-defense argument because Brown did not follow Qahir back into the restaurant. Brown believes he is the victim of a hate crime and says Qahir should be charged with attempted murder. Police said Qahir’s charges could be upgraded. Qahir has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
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