Ear Hustle

Evanston, IL: “Bank Robber Shot By Police Suspected in Tobacco Shop Murders, Police Say”

Evanston police have identified the bank robber shot and killed by police on Monday as a primary suspect in the double murder of the Hakeem brothers at their Evanston tobacco shop this summer, according to a press release.


Police say they have discovered evidence that links Kevin Ross, 29, an Evanston resident, with the shooting deaths of the two brothers at Evanston Pipe & Tobacco on July 30. Police found Mobeen, 34, and Azim, 38, dead from multiple gunshot wounds in the basement of the store, 923 Davis St. The two grew up in Evanston and took over running their father’s store about 10 years ago, family members say.

Police shot and killed Ross in downtown Evanston Monday afternoon, after he refused to drop his weapon. FBI agents believe he robbed five banks around the Chicago area, including the Chase Bank at 901 Grove St. this past Monday and in September.

After Ross’s death on Monday, detectives searched his south Evanston home and discovered a storage locker containing the identification of Mobeen Hakeem and a social security card belonging to Azim Hakeem, according to the release. They also found a .22 caliber shell casing that appears to match the shell casings found at the crime scene. The Illinois State Police Crime Lab will do further comparison of the shell casings, according to the release.


Police also found a receipt from May 2013 for a purchase of a cigar from the pipe and tobacco shop on Davis Street, indicating Ross had been to the shop before the brothers were killed.

Finally, police discovered that Ross purchased a .22 caliber semi-automatic pistol at a Chicago area gun shop in June 2013, according to the release. It’s the same weapon that was used to commit the murders. Police are now trying to locate the weapon, which may have been resold to other gun shops.

Police say Ross had no previous arrests in the Illinois area, and possessed a valid FOID card allowing him to purchase firearms and ammunition. He lived briefly in Florida, however, and police and FBI agents are trying to determine whether he may have been involved in other criminal activity outside of the state.

Evanston police are also examining Kevin Ross’ computer in search of more information and a possible motive for the murders, the release said.




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