Father Charged With 1st Degree Murder of Gay Son, Mother Also Shot Dead


*Sadly, when I suggested this story to my editor, she thought it sounded familiar. Even more sadly, it does. Hate crimes against gays and lesbians occur all too frequently in this country. This one has an interesting, sick twist:

Someone killed the gay man’s mother, as well.

69-year-old Shehada Khalil Issa faces a premeditated murder charge in the death of his 29-year-old son Amir Issa, which is being considered a hate crime.  The younger Issa’s body was found outside the family home in the North Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles last Tuesday, and the young man’s mother’s body was also found inside the home.  Prosecutors allege that Shehada Issa had previously threatened to kill his son because he was gay.

The suspect claims he acted in self defense, claiming he found his wife dead in the bathroom of his home and heard noises outside.  The suspect claims he armed himself with a shotgun and confronted his son outside the house, and has told police that his son had threatened him with a knife.

However, police say they didn’t find a knife or any other sign that Shahada Issa was defending himself at the murder scene.

The couple allegedly were evicting their son from the home, which the son had previously vandalized, according to a statement from an LA police detective.

Shehada Issa is being held without bail and faces life in prison without a chance for parole if convicted. He’s scheduled to be arraigned April 11.

It sounds like Shehada Issa isn’t disputing that he pulled the trigger and fatally shot his son. The death of his wife — his son’s mother — is still under investigation.

If this story isn’t the definition of a tragedy, independent of the son’s sexual orientation or his father’s feelings about that, I don’t know what is.

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