MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. (KDKA) – Police issued an arrest warrant for the cousin of a Beaver County man who was found shot to death in the trunk of his car in Moon Township.
Junaid Akhlas, 28, from Beaver was found in the trunk of his own vehicle at a vacant Texaco gas station on University Boulevard on Tuesday. Police said Akhlas had a gunshot wound to the head.READ MORE: Numerous Road Closures In Place As Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix Returns To Schenley Park
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On Wednesday, the Allegheny County Police Department issued an arrest warrant for his Akhlas’s cousin, 25-year-old Anoosh Almas, whose home is also in Beaver. Police believe he flew to Mexico a few hours after the crime. Some of Akhlas’s charges include criminal homicide, tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse.
A criminal complaint states that police discovered Akhlas was supposed to drive Almas to the airport on Monday night. Instead, Akhlas went missing. His family members were searching for him when they found his vehicle in the abandoned lot and called 911.
“It was hidden in plain sight. It was parked right across the street, just alongside the building, just parked there like any other vehicle. It wouldn’t be odd for a vehicle to be there sometimes, people park there,” said Aaron Adkins, who works next to the abandoned lot.READ MORE: Victim In Last Night's Deadly Shooting Near Quarry Field In Pittsburgh's South Side Slopes Identified
A criminal complaint states investigators found a Stoeger model STR-9 9mm pistol behind the vacant gas station. The gun was registered to Almas.
The criminal complaint explains what police learned happened a few hours after the crime. It states that Almas rented a room at a nearby Super 8 Motel, threw out a plastic bag full of blood-soaked clothes in a garbage can, took a Lyft to the airport from the motel and boarded a plane to Cancun.
A family friend told KDKA that Akhlas, who came here from Pakistan, was a devoted father to his toddler and a kind man who worked hard for his family. Patti Heinle said, “Sentiment would be it’s a tragic loss and sad thing coming to the U.S. he couldn’t be safer here.”
“It’s very emotional to think that could happen, that somebody is that coldblooded to take someone else’s life,” said Mike Warchol, who works near the abandoned lot.
A license plate reader camera system and cameras at Pittsburgh International Airport and the Super Motel 8 helped Allegheny County police put the pieces together in this case.MORE NEWS: Pittsburgh Weather: Chances For Rain And Storms Return This Weekend
No word on if Anoosh Almas is still in Cancun.