Reward up to $50,000 for suspect in Akron pizza shop employee murder

Reward up to $50,000 for suspect in Akron pizza shop employee murder
New developments in the search for Zak Husein's killer. (Source: Family)
Surveillance video captured the robbery turned homicide. (Source: Akron Police)
Surveillance video captured the robbery turned homicide. (Source: Akron Police)

AKRON, OH (WOIO) - A suspect is on the run after shooting and killing a 21-year-old pizza employee in Akron Monday night. Now a $50,000 reward is being offered for his capture.

Police say Zakareia Husein, of Springfield Township, was working at New York Style Pizza in the 300 block of E. Glenwood Ave. shortly before 11 p.m. when he was robbed and shot.

Employees at the pizza shop told police the suspect entered through the front doors armed with a black handgun. The suspect approached the front counter, pointed the gun at Husein and demanded money from the register. After Husein handed the suspect an undetermined amount of money, the suspect fired a shot, hitting him in the upper torso. The suspect then fled.

"We just got robbed and someone got shot. You need to hurry up, please," an employee told police dispatch.

Husein, a University of Akron student, was taken to Akron City Hospital. He died early Tuesday morning.

The university released the following statement expressing its condolences:

"We are saddened to report the passing of Zakareia Husein, who was a student here studying international business. He was working in a pizza shop a few miles north of campus on East Glenwood Avenue last night when the shop was robbed.

Friends of Zakareia will remember him as a talented student and as an active member of the Muslim Students Association. The University extends its condolences to Zakareia's family and friends, and we share in your sadness over such a senseless act.

The death of someone so young is always difficult to accept. We have professionals on campus who can help anyone dealing with grief. You can call the Counseling Center at 330-972-7082 for assistance."

Akron Police have very little to go on for a description, but surveillance footage is providing some clues. Police say the suspect was described as a black man, who was wearing a black mask covering his face, a black, hooded sweatshirt, black pants and black and white shoes. Detectives are considering the theory that the shooter is a woman, given the dress, build and gate of the killer.

Lieutenant Rick Edwards says the person who pulled the trigger is also one of two suspects behind a pair of violent robberies from Saturday evening at the Family Dollar stores on East Tallmadge and South Main. Victims there were pistol whipped and a was shot fired.

The family says a $10,000 reward is being offered for information that will lead to the capture and conviction of Husein's killer. Anyone with more information is urged to call the Akron Police Department Detective Bureau at (330) 375-2490; U.S. Marshals Service at 1-866-4WANTED; or Summit County Crime Stoppers at 330–434–COPS. You can also text "TIPSCO" with your tips to CRIMES. Tipsters can remain anonymous.

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