Store manager killed by suspected thieves

Police say a store manager confronted a suspect thief and was then struck and killed by the alleged get-away vehicle.

August 16, 2010 11:16:39 AM PDT
A store manager was run over and killed trying to stop a shoplifter in southwest Houston late Friday. The victim wasn't even working when he was killed. Investigators say the victim, Abo Obyb Abdel-Salaam, 43, confronted a man outside the Chevron gas station on Dairy Ashford and Brant Rock. He had stopped by for just a few minutes last night and that's when police say he was killed.

"Where is the humanity?" asked Mohid al-Mohammad, Obyb Abdel-Salaam's cousin, friend and business partner.

Al-Mohammad is stunned at the ruthless murder.

"The guy was really a hard-working, loving person," he said.

Police say around 10pm, one of the suspects, identified as Curtis Odette Robinson, came into the convenience store and tried to steal a bag with T-shirts worth $5.99. When a store clerk went after him, Robinson and his wingman, Albert Lee Hall, started a fight.

Obyb Abdel-Salaam went outside to break up the brawl and that's when police say Robinson ran over him, dragging him 50 feet, killing him. Hall then got into the vehicle and both suspects fled the scene.

"Just to get a T-shirt, there is no point in that," said one customer with whom we spoke.

Police say while there is surveillance video of the suspects driving over Obyb Abdel-Salaam. It's too graphic to release.

"A picture says a thousand words. That says exactly what happened," said Sgt. Bobby Roberts with the Houston Police Department homicide division. "There are no questions about what happened."

The victim's family, most of Jordanian descent, say losing him during the holy month of Ramadan leaves a hole in their heart and in the community.

"It's sad," said al-Mohammad. "It's a big loss."

Both suspects have been arrested. Robinson, 21, is charged with murder while Hall, 25, is charged with assault.

Obyb Abdel-Salaam is survived by his wife and three young children. The couple had a fourth child on the way.


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