LOS ANGLES, CA–
The father repeatedly threatened to kill his son because he was gay. Then he allegedly did so this week.
Shehada Khalil Issa, 69, was charged with using a shotgun in the premeditated murder of his son, Amir Issa, 29, Los Angeles County prosecutors said.
The mother was also found dead inside the family home in the North Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, authorities said.
Her death is still under investigation, and authorities didn’t immediately release her name.
The son was allegedly shot outside of the house, and authorities haven’t provided further details of the circumstances. Police responded to a 911 call Tuesday and discovered the bodies at the family home.
Investigators told the Los Angeles Daily News, Issa had initially said he found his dead wife in the bathroom of their house and had shot his son in self-defense after being threatened with a knife.
Later, Issa made “incriminating statements” and was subsequently charged with murder. A detective told the paper: “It was a horrible family tragedy.”
Investigators were looking at whether a domestic dispute was also involved in the incident. Issa had allegedly threatened to kill his son on prior occasions because he was gay, KTLA reported.
The Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations reported in 2014 that the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community was among groups that suffer “the bulk of all hate crime victims,” according to the commission’s annual report.
The other groups were African-Americans, Latinos, and Jews, and together the four groups were targets of 86 percent of such crimes.
Hate crimes rose 1 percent in 2014, but the number of hate crimes, 389, was the second-lowest for 25 years and was dramatically lower than the peak year of 2001 when the post-9/11 attacks era led to a spike in hate crimes against the Muslim and Middle Eastern community, the commission said.
Issa is being held without bail and could face life in prison without the possibility of parole.
He will be arraigned on April 11.