Murder of three men by Mahdi Hassan Ali in Minneapolis store investigated by See No Evil

Mugshot of Madhi Hassan Ali
Mahdi Hassan Ali will likely die in prison following his conviction on three murder counts. Pic credit: Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office

See No Evil is investigating the murder of three men, Mohamed Warfa, Osman Elmi, and Anwar Mohammed, who were gunned down by Mahdi Hassan Ali during a botched robbery at a convenience store in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis, Minnesota.

On January 6, 2010, teenagers Hassan Ali and his accomplice Ahmed Shire Ali (no relation) entered the Seward Market armed with a semi-automatic weapon. Store clerks Warfa and his cousin Elmi were rounded up and ordered to lie on the ground as Shire Ali robbed two customers at the back of the store.

A third customer, Anwar Mohammed, walked into the store, startling Hassan Ali, who promptly shot the 31-year-old in the head.

The 30-year-old Warfa then lunged at the gunman and was also shot dead. At this point, Hassan Ali and Shire Ali fled the store.

Elmi rushed to his phone to dial 911, but as he did so, Hassan Ali ran back into the store and shot the 28-year-old before he again fled the scene. The murders were caught on camera, but the perpetrators had covered their faces.

The murders shocked the large Somali community that had made the Seward neighborhood their home. It later emerged that many within the community had known both the victims and the killer.

Public help led the Minneapolis cops to arrest Mahdi Hassan Ali and Ahmed Shire Ali

The investigators were eventually led to Hassan Ali and Shire Ali by a couple of key tip-offs from the public.

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Mugshot of Ahmed Shire Ali
Ahmed Shire Ali played a vital role in testifying against Hassan Ali. Pic credit: Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office

Eventually, Hassan Ali was found guilty on four counts of first-degree murder and two counts of second-degree murder. He was given three automatic life sentences without the possibility of parole.

The US Supreme Court later resentenced Hassan Ali because he was only 17 years old when the crime was committed. As a minor, he was ineligible for a sentence without the possibility of parole.

He was resentenced with the chance of parole, but because he is serving three consecutive life sentences, he is unlikely to be eligible until he is over 100 years old.

Ahmed Shire Ali later claimed Mahdi Hassan Ali was not responsible for the murders

Shire Ali pleaded guilty to his role in the robbery and testified against his accomplice, playing a key role in convicting Hassan Ali. He was sentenced to 18 years.

In 2021, it was reported that Shire Ali later claimed he lied about Hassan Ali, suggesting that he had framed him. Shire Ali claimed the true killer has since passed away. As of writing, Hassan Ali remains behind bars.

See No Evil airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.

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