The Chief Medical Examiner of Washington DC has ruled today that the death of Ethiopian immigrant Ali Mohammed on Oct. 15 was a homicide. Pending the Medical Examiner’s decision, a court in DC had released on bail the DC9 Club owner and employees who beat up Ali to death. The court also allowed DC9 to reopen. More from 103.5 FM Radio:
Ali Mohammed, 27, died Oct. 15 after he reportedly threw a brick through the window of DC9 in Northwest and was chased by the club’s owner and four employees.
The medical examiner’s office Tuesday said its forensics examination concluded Mohammed’s death was a homicide caused by “excited delirium associated with arrhythmogenic cardiac anomalies, alcohol intoxication and physical exertion with restraint.”
The five DC9 employees initially had been charged with second-degree murder, but those charges were reduced to aggravated assault after the medical examiner’s office said the cause of his death could not be established through a physical autopsy.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office later dropped the assault charges after saying there was “an insufficient basis to sustain” them. It is not known whether prosecutors plan to revisit charges against the five club employees, but the U.S. Attorney’s Office says in a statement officials plan to review the findings of the forensics report.
“The Medical Examiner’s forensics examination has concluded that a variety of factors led to the death of Mr. Mohammed, and we intend to carefully study these conclusions as part of our legal analysis of this tragic incident,” the office’s statement says.
In a statement Tuesday, Mohammed’s family says they are confident the medical examiner’s findings are “a step toward justice for Ali.”
“The Medical Examiner¹s findings, however, also reminds us that Ali suffered a cruel and senseless death,” the family’s statement says. “Ali did not deserve to die for allegedly breaking a window. The family remains heartbroken and cannot have peace until those responsible for Ali¹s death are brought to justice.”
DC9 was allowed to reopen last week after a hearing before the D.C. Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration. The club currently is only open on Fridays and Saturdays.
ABRA spokeswoman Cynthia Simms tells WTOP Tuesday that DC9 will be allowed to remain open for the time being. A follow-up hearing had been scheduled for Jan. 19, at which the board will review the new information, Simms says.
She says the board also will consider whether DC9 has been following new security guidelines agreed to by the club following Mohammed’s death.
WTOP’s Mark Segraves contributed to this report.