BY ARIEL HERNANDEZ
Following the recent attack on Jamaica’s own, Nazma Khanam, the 60-year-old Bangledash woman that was brutally stabbed to death just a few blocks ahead of her husband, near their home on August 31 at 9:15 p.m., the PRESS of Southeast Queens was informed by the NYPD that 22-year-old Yonatan Galvez-Marin was arrested on Sunday and had been charged on second degree murder, first degree robbery and criminal possession of a weapon.
According to reports, Khanam, who was not only a wife and mother but was also the aunt of NYPD transit officer Humayun Kabir, was attacked in her Jamaica Hills neighborhood by Galvez-Marin, whom originally attempted to rob Khanam for money. When Khanam did not have any money to give to Galvez-Marin, because she was simply out for a night-time walk with her 75-year-old husband, Shamsul Alam Khan, Galvez-Marin stabbed her several times with a kitchen blade. The suspect used so much force in stabbing Khanam that a piece of the murder weapon had broken off and was found lodged in her chest.
Khanam’s funeral service was held last Friday at the Jamaica Muslim Center, while a burial is being planned for her in Bangladesh.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Nazma Khanam, who was senselessly murdered while she was walking home on Normal Road in Jamaica Hills while wearing a traditional Muslim dress,” said Borough President Melinda Katz. “The aunt of an NYPD officer, Mrs. Khanam was a dedicated school teacher in her native Bangladesh and continued to work hard at the Jamaica souvenir shop she operated with her husband. Although the motive behind Mrs. Khanam’s killing remains uncertain, it is comforting to know that detectives from the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force are a part of the investigation.”
Since receiving the 9-1-1 call that an assault had occurred in front of 160-12 Normal Road, the NYPD had taken immediate action in looking for the suspect in connection to the homicide within the confines of the 107 Precinct. On Friday, the day of Khanam’s funeral, the NYPD stated that there would be a $10,000 reward to anyone who offered up the suspect.
Although Galvez-Marin has been arrested and charged with several counts, the NYPD has not confirmed that this was a hate crime.
“I am saddened to hear news of the death of Nazma Khanam following yesterday’s deplorable attack in Jamaica Hills,” said Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Fresh Meadows). “Our community is one that stands together against each and every possible bias incident, and together we mourn the passing of one of our neighbors. I send my condolences to the family of Nazma Khanam and urge the New York Police Department to investigate this attack as a possible hate crime against the Muslim American community.”
The PRESS of Southeast Queens will continue to follow this investigation as elected officials and the Muslim and Southeast Queens community call for justice.
Reach Ariel Hernandez at (718) 357-7400 x144 or firstname.lastname@example.org