SEATTLE - Hamza Warsame’s family members are asking supporters to quit speculating on social media about how the 16-year-old boy died.
“I would like to ask all those who are making comments to refrain and wait until we find the truth,” the boy’s cousin, Mumin Dimbil, said outside the Abu Bakr Mosque on Tuesday. “I want to know what happened to Hamza, how he died. That’s all I want to know.”
An official cause of death has not been released, but anger over whether the Muslim teen was the victim of a “hate crime” "murder" has gone viral.
Dimbil also expressed anger over what he called a “lack of communication” by the Seattle Police Department for not keeping the family informed about the investigation.
Warsame, a Running Start student at Seattle Central College, fell 60 feet to his death off a building in the 300 block of Summit Avenue East Saturday afternoon.
His sister told KIRO 7 he went there to study with another student and was dead an hour later.
“Hamza would not have gone upstairs to the roof by himself. He has never been to that building ever in his life before that day,” Ikram Warsame said.
She, too, is bothered by online speculations about what led to her younger brother's death.
“I want to condemn the threads going on social media about my brother committing suicide,” she said through tears. “I knew my brother for the past 16 years that he was alive, and no one is going to step up now and tell me he committed suicide.”
In response to all the questions, the Seattle Police Department released a statement Tuesday morning that read, "the department is aware of community concerns about the case and Assistant Chief Robert Merner is personally supervising the matter."
Sgt. Sean Whitcomb also said the department has been investigating the cause of death since it happened, but confirmed the investigation was stepped up because of community concern.
In its released statement, the SPD asked the community to be "patient and avoid jumping to conclusions while detectives conduct their work."
Warsame’s cousin asked the same: “I really want this case to be more facts rather that what someone believes,” Dimbil told KIRO 7. “I do not know what happened. All I know is that Hamza is dead now, sadly.”