Middle East

US detectives investigate death of Saudi student in Miami

Author: sarah glubbID: 1539108105692021700Tue, 2018-10-09 20:48

LONDON: US police have launched a murder investigation after a Saudi student was found dead in his Florida apartment.
The body of Yasser Abualfaraj, 23, was discovered by his room mate on Sunday in a building opposite the University of Miami where he was studying.
Miami-Dade Police Department said Abualfaraj was found with “multiple signs of trauma.”
Abualfaraj, from Jeddah, went to study architecture in Miami in May 2015, US media reported.
“Its an open investigation and we are working to find any witnesses who may have heard or seen anything at the time and we are working right now to possibly find out if anyone can produce some kind of a sketch of the person, or something of that nature, to provide leads,” Det. Chris Thomas told Arab News.
He said the cause of death was unknown and possible motive was unclear. The “investigation is still in the early stages,” Det. Thomas said.
He said a medical examiner would carry out an autopsy soon, without specifying a date.
Det. Thomas said police have spoken to many people close to Abualfaraj, including his roommate, and they have provided whatever information they have to “piece together what they saw and if there is a possibility of them producing some kind of photograph of the person.”
A vigil was held for Abualfaraj by the universitys students and staff on Monday, and classes were canceled to mourn the student.
In a Facebook post for the schools Intensive English Program, Abualfaraj said he liked Miami because he could “go for a bike ride any time and anywhere.”
“What is disturbing is you have a 23-year-old male, in the university, trying to better himself. And because of this incident and the magnitude of this incident, its really very disturbing,” Det. Thomas told CBS Miami in a separate interview.
Det. Thomas also said Abualfarajs family has been notified.
In a statement to Al-Arabiya, the Saudi Embassy in Washington, said it has been informed about the incident and is following up with the investigation, while providing all the necessary support to his family.
The University of Miami said it was working closely with police and was “deeply saddened by this tragic news.”

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