Local News

Husband pleads guilty in wife's Chapel Hill shooting death

Posted October 27, 2014

— A man who authorities said gunned down his estranged wife outside a Chapel Hill elementary school in 2012 pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree murder.

Ali Cherfaoui, 51, has already pleaded guilty to other charges in connection with the case. He is facing the next 30 to 42 years in prison on those charges, and he was given another 24 to 30 years for the murder plea.

Police said Cherfaoui shot Chahnaz Kebaier, 40, multiple times as she waited for their 4-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter to be dismissed from Mary Scroggs Elementary School on May 25, 2012.

Authorities have said the case was the result of an "ongoing domestic dispute," and court documents indicate Kebaier had obtained a domestic violence protective order in which she claimed Cherfaoui threatened to kill her if she took the children.

Prosecutor Michelle Hamilton said in court Monday that Kebaier was shot at least five times in the face.

"Some witnesses saw that, as soon as she saw him, she put her hands up and started to back away like she was in fear," Hamilton said.

The victim's older sister, Dorsaf Kebaier, told Superior Court Judge Rueben Young that Chahnaz Kebaier was full of life and loved people. She said her sister's life changed soon after she married Cherfaoui, whom Dorsaf Kebaier described as controlling, abusive and manipulative.

Dorsaf Kebaier said the day before her sister was slain, Cherfaoui called his mother-in-law and said, "I will kill her and kill myself and die as a martyr for my children."

"She still wanted to find a solution so that the children could have both parents in their life," Dorsaf Kebaier said. "Her exact words were, 'I do not want to deprive him from his children, and I do not want to deprive my children from their father.'"

Cherfaoui, who was initially charged with first-degree murder, has also pleaded guilty to second-degree kidnapping, discharging a weapon on school property and possession of a weapon on school property.

Defense attorney James E. Williams said Cherfaoui "unraveled" when his wife asked for a divorce because he was committed to his family.

"It's not clear to me that on the day he went to that school what his intentions were – nobody ultimately did," Williams said. "I know he said he was going to kill himself."

The couple's children now live with Kebaier's parents in Tunisia.

"On that Friday afternoon more than two years ago, (the children) found themselves alone without a mother, without a father," Dorsaf Kebaier said. "Sadly, what their father did will always be a heavy label and a source of pain and suffering."



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  • 68_dodge_polara Oct 28, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Not so, as Kebaier had obtained a domestic violence protective order so Ali Cherfaoui amendment rights were not intact.

  • balog Oct 28, 2014

    No gun control laws to keep guns or get guns out of the hands of a domestic abuser.
    Woman dead. Children motherless.

  • dh1964 Oct 28, 2014

    View quoted thread

    This guy shot his wife in the face five times, in front of an elementary school, and you two are worried about whether his child support payments might have been too high? Seriously?

  • iknowjack Oct 28, 2014

    Sure wish wife-killers Young, Cooper, and Peterson were this honorable. Of course they pretty much had this guy dead to rights. No lawyers whispering sweet nothings in his ear like those three monsters.

  • Lightfoot3 Oct 28, 2014

    "which is still cheaper than death sentence" - Grand Union

    That's debatable, but if so can be EASILY fixed. But we shouldn't deny justice based on economics.

    "No we don't." - Grand Union

    Uh, yes, we do. Identifying ALL the parameters (instead of just the ones on your agenda) is how we solve the problem.

    "Pesky thing the Constituition" - Grand Union

    The death penalty is NOT against the Constitution.

    "And I guess you missed the guy being freed a few weeks back after years on death row for a crime he definitely did not commit?" - Grand Union

    I guess you missed all the evidence, witnesses, and the fact that THIS man plead guilty.

  • 68_dodge_polara Oct 28, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Thank goodness for the clear wording of the Constitution including the second amendment much to the dismay of the left. Some don't even know how to spell it.

  • dirtydozen431 Oct 28, 2014

    Murder and scandal at school. An Orange County school.

  • Grand Union Oct 28, 2014

    .with your lifetime expenses paid for by the taxpayers.
    Read more at http://www.wral.com/husband-pleads-guilty-in-wife-s-chapel-hill-shooting-death/14119794/#XF2UM8VutDtMZB2I.99

    which is still cheaper than death sentence.....

    In no way do I condone this action however, one must seriously consider what pushed this man to
    Read more at http://www.wral.com/husband-pleads-guilty-in-wife-s-chapel-hill-shooting-death/14119794/#XF2UM8VutDtMZB2I.99

    No we don't.

    He should be facing the death penalty, carried out swiftly.
    Read more at http://www.wral.com/husband-pleads-guilty-in-wife-s-chapel-hill-shooting-death/14119794/#XF2UM8VutDtMZB2I.99

    Pesky thing the Constituition.........it is funny how the right think a weird interpretation of the 2nd cannot possibly be wrong, but any other part which they don't like can be ignored.
    And I guess you missed the guy being freed a few weeks back after years on death row for a crime he definitely did not commit?

  • Alexia Proper Oct 27, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    Likely. Even if it's not "destroying" the person, the law prescribes some fairly high child support costs in some cases. While I think child support is reasonable, I have never believed that $1000/mo for a child was appropriate. But, the law thinks it is. Basically, the absent parent pays for the custodial parent's home. Nice benefits for custodial parents: they get to keep the children and get most of their home paid for,

  • dadof3 Oct 27, 2014

    Kidnapping is making a person move against their will even if it is only a few feet.

    View quoted thread