MILWAUKEE — A neighbor fired two rounds into an off-duty Milwaukee police community service officer after the officer complained to him that grass clippings were left on his yard, according to a criminal complaint released Wednesday.
As TMJ4 reported, the community service officer, Naeem Sarosh, was pronounced dead, surrounded by his family and the family of the suspect, on Aug. 31. Authorities are investigating the shooting as a homicide.
The criminal complaint on Wednesday identified the suspect as 65-year-old Mohammed Afzal. He has now been charged with first degree reckless homicide, use of a dangerous weapon, which, if he is found guilty, could land him up to 65 years behind bars.
The complaint describes that Sarosh and his family lived next door to Afzal and his family. Apparently the two families were on good terms, but the two men were not.
On Aug. 31, Sarosh noticed that either Afzal or a member of his family was mowing their yard when they left grass clippings on Sarosh's lawn, the complaint states.
Sarosh walked across Afza's yard and knocked on his door, which Afzal opened. The complaint states that the two men began talking through the opened door. Video from a camera mounted on the suspect's home shows Sarosh in a relaxed composure, with his hands in his pockets, the complaint states.
But the discussion escalated quickly, according to the video, and Afza soon pulled out a gun and pointed it at Sarosh. That's when the suspect opened fire, hitting Sarosh once in the front of his body, according to the complaint.
As Sarosh ran down the driveway, Afza raised his gun and fired a second round, this time hitting Sarosh in the back, the complaint states.
The complaint states that Afza was in no rush to either help the victim or flee the scene. The complaint describes that Afza lowered his gun, checked it, glanced back at where Sarosh had been, and walked back into his house.
When officers arrived, Afza admitted to them that he had shot the victim, according to the complaint. He said that when Sarosh knocked on his door, Afza answered with a pistol in his hand. Because the victim had his hands in his pockets, Afza said he thought he too was armed with a gun. That is why he shot him, Afza told officers, according to the complaint.
Afza later acknowledged that the victim was not armed at the time, and that he had fired the gun "to scare away" the victim, according to the complaint.
After shooting Sarosh, Afza said he walked back into his house and changed clothes, knowing police "would be coming for him," the complaint states.
Responding authorities pronounced Sarosh dead at the scene.