Pennsylvania restaurant owner arrested after shooting 15-year-old boy

  • Mohammed Hamdan, 39, allegedly shot a 15-year-old who had attempted to rob his restaurant on Saturday night 
  • The teen, who was shot three times, is in stable condition after suffering bullet wounds to his right forearm and shoulder blade 
  • Hamdan was later arrested for aggravated assault when police determined that the teen was unarmed and was not a threat 

A business owner in Pennsylvania is facing charges after allegedly shooting a 15-year-old boy who snatched a tip jar off his counter.

Mohammed Hamdan, 39, the partial owner of the Stowe Township eatery Hook Fish and Chicken – just outside of Pittsburgh – allegedly shot the teen several times at about 10pm Saturday.

The victim was found down the road with multiple gunshot wounds after his mother called 911.

On surveillance video viewed by police, he was seen entering the restaurant and approaching the counter. 

The store owner began taking his order, which is when police say the teen reached over the counter, grabbed the tip jar, and turned toward the exit.

Mohammed Hamdan, 39, allegedly shot the teen several times as she tried to leave the Stowe Township eatery Hook Fish and Chicken on Saturday

The 15-year-old boy allegedly tried to steal the tip jar from the counter at 10pm on Saturday night

Hamdan, authorities say, then raised a pistol and fired at least three rounds toward the offender.

A criminal complaint states he was shot multiple times in his right arm and once in his right shoulder blade, which caused a bone fracture.

He was taken to the hospital and is in stable condition.

The Allegheny County Police Department said that surveillance footage and witnesses to the scene yielded no evidence that the teen was armed or had threatened Hamdan.

Police then consulted with the district attorney’s office, who approved charging Hamdan with aggravated assault.

The criminal complaint additionally alleges that Hamdan told investigators he saw the teenager and his brother earlier in the day and ‘expected them to try and steal from him.’

One of the restaurant’s other co-owners told a local outlet that Hamdan wasn’t trying to hurt the teen.

He said his business partner was only trying to fire warning shots in order to stop him. 

The co-owner said the teen had been to the shop three different times that night, twice with a group.

He said the boy ran off with the tip jar, which at the time had about $100 in it.

Hamdan was arrested Sunday morning and is being held in the Allegheny County Jail pending his preliminary arraignment. 

WPXI News spoke with Eszquire Harris – the CEO of a community gathering space down the block from the restaurant.

He said it’s ‘a little disheartening that people’s first response is violence.’

A local reporter points to the bullet mark in the door, which was struck by one of Hamdan's shots as he fired at the teen

Community organizer Eszquire Harris said it was troubling that some choose to resort to violence to deal with the troubled youth of the area

Harris attempts to keep troubled youth in his community on the straight-and-narrow. 

He said he tries to keep them out of trouble by teaching them their own self-worth and connecting them with music through his multimedia production company.

‘They’re hurting, so to be able to connect with them when they are the most vulnerable instead of attacking them has allowed us to establish genuine relationships with them,’ he said.

‘I’m always out here supporting them, loving them, communicating with them. ‘How’s life? How’s school?

‘Hearing a kid get shot over money who could’ve lost his life over money, when I know a lot of these kids in this community, they’re struggling to survive.’ 


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