One year after murder at Akron pizza shop: Police, family still looking for justice

AKRON, Ohio - Almost a year after his brother was shot and killed while preparing to close his family's pizza shop in Akron, Ammar Husein says the memory of what happened still hurts.

"I can't take away that moment of picking him up off the floor, and lifting his shirt and seeing a bullet," Husein said.

Zack Husein, 21, was behind the counter of Premium New York Style Pizza when a robber dressed almost entirely in black entered the store with a gun in his outstretched arm.

A video from a security camera shows Husein complying with every demand, but he was still shot and killed.

"Initially, when we talked about this there was a lot of speculation it was possibly a female involved so we did start getting calls with people calling in tips related to a female. Those have dried up. From our analysis at this point, looking at the video and talking with other employees who were there that night, we are pretty adamant that it was a male," said Akron Police Lt. Rick Edwards.

Akron police have had help from outside agencies analyzing the video.  They now believe the gunman is a male about 5 foot 9 inches tall.

They also still believe he was involved in at least two other robberies of local dollar stores. In one of them, a shot was fired, but it ricocheted off of a counter top.

A reward of $50,000 is still good for information that can help identify the person responsible for the murder, but almost a year after the crime police are baffled by how few tips a reward of that amount has generated.

"With our case, nothing is going and that's frustrating. I myself, I'm still young, I'm in my 20s. I can battle through it, but you know, when you constantly have to tell your mom they are going to get this guy in custody, you tell your father it's going to be alright, just have some faith. It gets tough," Amar Husein said.

"Every moment, I mean can't get in my car without thinking, 'I remember when me and my brother took this one road trip.' There's not a time when I go to my parents' house and remember, 'This is a time when I played a prank on him.' There's not a time when, you know, every time I take care of my customers and every time I collect money to feed my family, I'm standing in the place my brother was murdered," Amar Husein said.

Almost a year since the crime, police have not given up hope that someone will make the right call. They are as anxious as ever to get the person responsible in custody.

"We are trying to keep this thing going, the momentum going forward because we feel that somebody in this community knows who did it who's responsible. It's  just that nobody is coming forward," Edwards said.

Amar Husein isn't giving up hope either.

"You will have to answer for any knowledge you have. And you don't have to answer to me. I don't owe you nothing, you don't owe me anything, I don't want anything from you. I don't know if you want anything from me, but when you meet your maker and you know you will have to answer and that's eternal," Husein said.

Continuing coverage here

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