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Second suspect charged in December killing of prominent Columbus imam

Tuesday May 24, 2022
By Cole Behrens

Imam Mohamed Hassan Adam, 48 was found dead on Dec. 24 inside a van behind a chain link fence on the 1400 block of Windsor Avenue on the city's North side. PROVIDED

A second suspect has been charged in connection with an attempted kidnapping and robbery that led to the murder of a prominent Columbus imam in December.

In addition, hours after a fatal shooting on the Southeast Side, a man turned himself in to Columbus police. 

Isaiah Brown-Miller, 22, of Columbus, was charged Saturday in connection with the murder of Mohamed Hassan Adam, 48, a longtime imam at the Masjid Abu Hurairah mosque on Columbus' Northeast Side and a leader of the city's large Somali community, court records show.

Adam was last seen on Dec. 22, when he left home to pick up his child from a day care center on Oakland Park Avenue, police said. His family reported him missing a day later and his body was discovered inside a van on Dec. 24 in a wooded lot in the city’s North Side. 

An autopsy report released in February shows Adam was shot at least four times.

What we know so far about Columbus imam's slaying

In February, John W. Wooden Jr., 46, of Franklinton, was arrested and charged with murder in connection with Adam's death. A ballistics match confirmed a handgun found in his house during his arrest was the weapon used to kill Adam, according to court records.

Wooden was later indicted on two counts of murder, two counts of aggravated robbery, two counts of having a weapon under disability, two counts of unlawful use of a weapon by a violent career criminal and several other charges. Wooden's case is ongoing and he is currently being held on $2 million bond.

The Dispatch previously reported that Wooden had been released from federal prison in March 2021 after serving more than 10 years for a federal robbery conviction.

Detective Earl Westfall, the lead investigator on the case, said at the time that he believed at least one other person, and possibly more, were involved in Adam's slaying.

Through the course of their investigation, police said Saturday that they identified Brown-Miller as a second participant in the robbery and kidnapping that led to the imam's death.

Man turns himself in after fatal Southeast Side shooting

Columbus police also arrested a man who turned himself in several hours after a shooting during an altercation on the city's Southeast Side turned fatal. 

Around 2 a.m. Saturday, police found 32-year-old Rayn Cannon, of the East Side, who had been shot on the 4600 block of Fenimore Court. Medics rushed Cannon to Mount Carmel East hospital, where he died. 

According to court records, another person who was at the scene identified Mitchell as the shooter to police. 

On Saturday evening, 21-year-old Bayette Mitchell, of the Hilltop, turned himself in at Columbus police headquarters and was taken into custody. Mitchell has been charged with murder and is being held in the Franklin County jail.



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