17-year-old Elijah Al-Amin was stabbed and killed for listening to rap music on 4 July 2019, reported Vox.
Michael Paul Adams admitted that he killed the teenager because he heard him playing rap music earlier in the car. According to AZ Central, Adams told the police that rap music makes him feel “unsafe” and he feels threatened by the people who listen to this type of music.
CNN reported that Adams was charged with first-degree premeditated murder and is held at the Maricopa County Jail. His preliminary hearing in court is scheduled on 15 July 2019.
It has been suggested that the attack was motivated by Adams’s untreated mental illness. However, a spokesman with the Arizona Department of Corrections Bill Lamoreaux said in the statement that “the tragic death is terrible, and Mr. Adams will have to answer for his alleged actions.”
The situation resulted in the response from Al-Amin’s family as well as the broader public. They argue that at a time of high-profile incidents of black people being harassed or confronted in public spaces, listening to rap music should not have cost Elijah his life.
The hashtag #JusticeForElijah has been circulated on Twitter and Instagram to share the story and support Al-Amin’s family. Some users are calling for the case to be investigated as a hate crime by the Department of Justice.
— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) July 8, 2019