Fruit vendor shot while protecting watermelons

Surmaki Wali (Source: Family)
Surmaki Wali (Source: Family)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A man was shot while protecting his watermelons at a fruit stand near the intersection of Summer Avenue and Hollywood Street.

Memphis Police Department arrived around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday and found the injured man.

A relative of the victim said 23-year-old Shamarke Abdullahi, a father to a 1-year-old boy, was protecting his watermelons as several men tried to rob him. He was shot in the stomach.

Friends said the watermelon vendor never showed up to pick up his fruit on Wednesday, which is why Abdullahi was waiting in his car so late.

"By him waiting for him, a couple of kids thought he had money and tried to rob him," his friend said. "They walked up with a gun and started shooting."

Police said there were three to four people involved in the reported robbery.

"That man he ain't got nothing," a friend said. "He ain't got no money, he just trying to make it. He has kids and family."

Friends said Abdullahi is from Africa and came to America for a better life. But now, the young father is in the hospital recovering from what friends said was a petty crime.

"Why would you rob someone who ain't got nothing?" his friend said.

The person who owns the watermelons said he just drops the watermelons off, but didn't have any plans on coming back.

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