PALMETTO, FL (WFLA) – Customers and neighbors of Snappy’s Mart and Grocery in Palmetto watched Monday as police and deputies investigated the murders of two young brothers. The store owner’s sons, 23-year-old Khasem Yousef and 17-year-old Faares Yousef, were shot to death between 2:30 and 2:45 p.m. Monday.
Detectives say they have identified a person of interest in the case and are looking for that person, but have not released a name.
A customer stumbled onto the scene just before 3 p.m. and called police. The store, located at 533 17th Street W., is a focal point for this neighborhood. You can pick up food, shoes, clothes and beauty supplies.
The brothers usually work at another store but were helping out, an emotional cousin told News Channel 8. “Murder of two kids, just can’t believe it,” Omar Sulveiman said. “I just wish (the killer) gets killed or he goes to prison for life or something.”
The Palmetto Police chief said it appears the victims didn’t see it coming. “The individual went into the store, and the two employees that were killed were at the front counter, and he walked up and shot ‘em. Pretty well just shot ‘em. Shot ‘em in the head,” Chief Scott Tyler said.
Video shows the murders in vivid detail, police said. A lone robber shoots both victims, police added. The video has not been released. Tyler said the video also shows the killer’s car. Inside the store, detectives found fingerprints.
Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Chad Oyler at 941-224-4988 or the Manatee County Crime Stoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS (8477). Callers may be eligible for a reward and can remain anonymous. In addition, the family of the victims is offering $10,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction.