Man claims he killed teen because victim’s rap music made him feel ‘unsafe’

Posted: Updated:
Peoria Police Department Peoria Police Department

An Arizona man said he fatally stabbed a teenage boy last week because the 17-year-old's rap music made him feel "unsafe," according to police.

Michael Paul Adams, 27, admitted to attacking Elijah Al-Amin, stabbing him in the back and slashing his throat inside a convenience store in Peoria, Arizona, last Thursday, according to court documents.

Adams said he lunged at the teen, who'd been listening to rap music in his car around 2 a.m., because he'd previously been attacked by people of color who listen to rap music.

Al-Amin collapsed face down trying to flee. Witnesses and police attempted to render aid by applying pressure to his neck, but he was pronounced dead less than 30 minutes later.

Police apprehended the suspect, who is white, a few blocks a way after he fled the scene on foot, according to a probable cause affidavit. Officers said he had spots of blood on his arm, hands and feet and a pocket knife in his possession. He admitted to his involvement in the stabbing and was taken into custody without incident.

He later told police that "rap music makes him feel unsafe, because in the past he has been attacked by people (Blacks, Hispanics, and Native American) who listen to rap music," the affidavit said.

"Adams further stated, people who listen to rap music are a threat to him and the community," the affidavit said. "Adams stated the rap music (not the victim) made him feel threatened and Adams felt he needed to be 'Proactive rather than reactive' and protect himself and the community from the victim."

Adams was charged with first-degree murder and was being held in lieu of a $1 million bond as of Monday evening. He is expected to appear in court next week.

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