Alleged gunman Ali Akbar Mohammadi Rafie, who went by 'Raefe Ahkbar.' (Photo : Facebook)
After surviving a gunshot wound and coping with the deaths of his two friends who were members of the popular Iranian rock band Yellow Dogs, Pooya Hosseini is speaking out about Monday's tragic triple murder-suicide that occurred in the East Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, N.Y.
On Monday, three members of the underground Iranian band were found dead after one of their former bandmates fatally shot them before killing himself.
Police say the suspect, who was identified as Raefe Ahkbar, was carrying a .308 caliber rifle. He reportedly moved floor-by-floor through the building fatally striking four members of the Yellow Dogs, including Hosseini, before shooting himself on the rooftop, reports the Wall Street Journal. The rifle was found next to Ahkbar's body.
The gunman may have been seeking revenge after allegedly being kicked out of the political rock band sometime in the past year for selling band equipment without the other member's knowledge.
Hosseini, a founding member of Iranian band Free Keys and friend of slain Yellow Dogs musicians Soroush Farazmand and Arash Farazmand, was at the rehearsal studio when gunman Rafie allegedly opened fire. Hosseini, who had been friends and former bandmates with Rafie, told the New York Times that Rafie came to his room to shoot him after he shot the two other men.
"He asked me, 'What happened to us?'" Hosseini said. "I said, 'Don't kill me! Don't kill me! Let me talk and then do it.'" After begging for his life, Hosseini managed to tackle Rafie who then ran to the roof and fatally shot himself.
"I really wish he didn't kill himself," Hosseini said. "When somebody kills himself, he makes it easy for himself. I didn't want it to be easy. I wish he was in jail for all of his life."
"He said, 'You had a plan to bring me here and put me in a band, but you did it just to bring me here and fix me with a group of Freemasonry," Hosseini recalled Rafie saying during Monday's attack.
Though investigators don't know exactly what drove Rafie to his alleged rampage, friends and acquaintances say the 28-year-old had had a difficult time adjusting after he moved to Brooklyn from Iran. After getting kicked out of the band, he eventually became withdrawn, and friends say he became paranoid and spoke about blowing up government buildings.