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Police say suspect may have injured missing boy

Written by The Associated Press | Aug 14, 2013 2:26 PM
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(York) -- Police say the man suspected of kidnapping a missing seven-month-old boy may have injured the child a few days before he disappeared.

Upper Darby Police Chief Michael Chitwood says investigators think 30-year-old Ummad Rushdi must have had second thoughts about how he disposed of the child's body.

Chitwood says he thinks Rushdi first buried the child near Columbia, then retrieved the remains and reburied him in a white garment.

Hamza Ali has been missing since August 4, when Rushdi apparently took the child from a home in Upper Darby. Police say Rushdi told his brother he shook the child to death.

Chitwood says Hamza's mother described a recent incident that may have injured the boy's shoulder or arm.

Police took a small shovel, two pickaxes, computer equipment and other items during a recent search of the Rushdi's, according to a court filing released today. The inventory of 30 seized items was produced by York Area Regional Police after a Tuesday afternoon search of the suburban York home where 30-year-old Ummad Rushdi, 30, lives with several other people. 

Delaware County Prison says Rushdi remained jailed there on charges he kidnapped Hamza Ali from an Upper Darby home earlier this month. He was the boyfriend of Hamza's mother Zainab Gaal, 20, who told investigators Rushdi beat her and abused the child.

After nearly two weeks of searching police have not found the boy, whom they fear is dead. In court documents police said Rushdi told his brother Jawwad Rushdi that he shook Hamza to death and then buried him somewhere.

The search in York yesterday  produced eight computers, three cellphones, an address book, documents, a stain on a wall, a stained towel and a pair of black shoes. In an area about 15 miles away from York, along Route 30 in the area of Columbia, Lancaster County, police said search dogs led them to a pillowcase that Gaal identified as belonging to Rushdi.

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