Pakistani family’s murder shocks small-town Texas

WASHINGTON: A Pakistani-American man estranged from his wife and four-year-old daughter allegedly shot them and his mother-in-law in a small Texas town before turning the gun on himself, police said.

The local police have not yet disclosed their names but the Islamic Society of Greater Houston (ISGH), which arranged their janaza prayers, identified the victims as Sadia Manzoor, her daughter Khadija Mohammad, and mother Inayat Bibi. The alleged shooter was only identified by his last name, Mohammad. They were laid to rest in the ISGH Muslim Cemetery in Waller, Texas.

“Please keep sister Sadia, her daughter and mother in your prayers and we ask that Allah give her father and other surviving family members patience to cope with this great loss,” ISGH said in a brief statement. The family lived in a Houston suburb called Spring, Texas, which is under the jurisdiction of Harris County Police.

In a tweet he posted on May 19, Harris County Sheriff Ed Conzalez reported: “It appears an estranged husband showed up at his wife’s apartment this morning. The male shot his wife, 4-yr-old daughter and his mother-in-law, then turned the gun on himself. All four were pronounced deceased at the scene. A pistol has been recovered. South Asian family, husband.”

In the next tweet, the sheriff added: “Four persons confirmed deceased inside an apartment unit. Initial observations, appears to be a murder-suicide. No active threat within the complex.”

Local police also confirmed that the victims and the alleged shooter were both from Pakistan. On May 20, a neighbour Tricia Penn responded to the sheriff’s tweet, saying: “God bless. This is awful. We failed this woman, her child and her mom. Dear State of Texas, we need to do better!”

Local media reports said Sadia Manzoor was a teacher at a nearby Islamic school where her coworkers said they became concerned when this “usually punctual employee” did not show up for work on Thursday.

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