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Queens Community Stunned By Bodega Killing; $12,000 Reward Offered

Ishak Ghali Came To The United States 7 Years Ago To Avoid Violence In Egypt
Slain bodega worker Ishak Ghali. (Photo: handout)

Slain bodega worker Ishak Ghali. (Photo: handout)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — At a time when much of the country is discussing gun violence, another gun-related murder has taken place in New York City.

A clerk at a Queens deli was shot to death, and as CBS 2′s John Slattery reported Friday the victim came to this country to escape the violence in Egypt.

An aunt of the victim was overcome with grief.  There was an uncle, cousins and friends, plus an Orthodox Coptic priest.

“I feel sad, very sad for their affliction,” the priest said.

Killed with a gunshot wound to the face was 26-year-old Ishak Ghali, who moved to Queens from Egypt seven years ago and worked 19 hours a day.

“My heart is just broken because I know this guy for a long time,” friend Ramez Ghobrial said. “I knew him for more than eight years, so nice, so kind.”

The killing took place across the street from where he lived, in a bodega where Ghali was working alone as a clerk Thursday evening, when a robbery occurred.

“The cash register was open. It appears all the money was taken. Two males wearing hoodies were seen exiting the store,” NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said.

CBS 2’s Slattery asked a cousin asked about surveillance video.

“Yeah, there was a camera, but no recording,” Mena Abderemalak said.

However, the police commissioner said detectives who had canvassed the area were looking for surveillance footage shot in the neighborhood.

The Bodega Association of the United States said it would like precautions taken.

“I’d like to see partitions. I’d like to see bullet-proof vests, and warning signal to let police know when something is happening,” spokesman Fernando Mateo said.

As many New Yorkers plan a week of family and celebration, one family will be preparing to send the body of a loved one back to Egypt for burial.

The NYPD is offering a $12,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the killer.

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