Local News

Murder Suspect Surrenders

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A police officer collects evidence at the crime scene. (WRAL-TV5 News)
DURHAM — A 16-year-old wanted in the death of a Durhamconvenience store manager has turned himself in to authorities. LeanderMitchell has been jailed without bond.

Hamood Hezam, 36, was shot in the head April 9 as he worked at the Stop1 Convenience Mart on Holloway Street. He died several hours later at ahospital.

Police continue to look for a second suspect in the murder and robbery.

Hezam was shot after the robbers re-entered the store and demanded thevideotape from a surveillance camera. The camera, however, had no tape init and was only mounted on the wall as a deterrent. Told the camera wasempty, the intruders did not believe the answer, and one fired at Hezam.A second store employee was not physically harmed.

Mitchell, a student at Githens Middle School, faces charges of murderand robbery with a dangerous weapon. He was accompanied by his attorneywhen he turned himself in at the Durham County magistrate's office.

Hezam came to the U.S. from Yemen. He worked 12- and 16-hour daysregularly to send money home to his family. More than 700 people attendedhis funeral Friday. Hezam was buried at a Raleigh mosque.

On Monday at 5:30 p.m., mourners will gather outside the conveniencestore for a prayer vigil sponsored by Durham Congregations in Action.


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