Ahmad Rahami’s Family: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

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The home and fried chicken restaurant owned by the family of Ahmad Khan Rahami in Elizabeth, New Jersey, were raided by the FBI and state police. (Getty)

The man suspected in three bombings in New York and New Jersey is an immigrant from Afghanistan who came to the United States with his family and helped run his father’s fried chicken business.

The Elizabeth, New Jersey, home of Ahmad Khan Rahami’s family, located above their restaurant, First American Fried Chicken, was raided by the FBI, ATF, state and local police on Monday. The restaurant and home are owned by Mohammad Rahami, Ahmad’s father, along with his mother, Najiba.

Along with his mother and father, Ahmad Rahami has several siblings, including three brothers and possibly two sisters, the New York Times reports. Two of his brothers share their fathers name, Mohammad, one of whom goes by his middle name, Qasim, according to court documents.

Ahmed Khan Rahami. (FBI)

Ahmed Khan Rahami. (FBI)

Ahmad Rahami was taken into custody in Linden, New Jersey, about four miles from his home, Monday morning. He was wounded, but survived. It is not clear if police are searching for other suspects in the bombings.

The family is not commenting about the incident.

Rahami’s sister, Zobyedh, a student at Rutgers, posted on Facebook, “I would like people to respect my family’s privacy and let us have our peace after this tragic time. I would not like to answer any questions.”

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Rahami’s Family Members Were Detained After a Traffic Stop in New York, NBC News Reports

According to NBC News, five members of Ahmad Rahami’s family were stopped near the Verrazano Bridge in New York City late Sunday night and detained for questioning by the FBI.

The New York Post reported that investigators had stopped a car near the Verrazano-Narrows bridge linking Staten Island to Brooklyn. Senator Marty Golden said on Instagram that the traffic stop was related to the bombing. The Post added that five people were taken into custody in the stop and were questioned in an FBI building in Manhattan.

The New York Times reports that the suspects were mostly from the same family and “may” have been headed to JFK Airport. They were spotted at Rahami’s home, which was being watched by the FBI.

The Verrazano Bridge is about 30 minutes from the Rahami’s home in Elizabeth.

They are not facing charges at this time, authorities say.

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2. The Fried Chicken Restaurant Caused Many Complaints From Neighbors Over Late Night Behavior by Customers



The fried chicken restaurant below the home where Rahami’s family lives in Elizabeth has been the target of complaints from neighbors for several years, the New York Times reports.

His father, Mohammad Rahami, owns the restaurant, called First American Fried Chicken. It opened several years ago, Mayor Christian Bollwage told the Times, and became a “persistent neighborhood nuisance,” according to the Times.

The restaurant stayed open all night, and drew large, loud crowds, Bollwage said. The city passed an ordinance forcing the restaurant to close at 10 p.m.

“The City Council voted to shut it down at 10,” Bollwage told the Times. “They kept getting complaints from neighbors; it was a distress to people in the neighborhood.”

Neighbors said the Rahamis did not comply, and in one case, one of Ahmad’s brothers got into a fight with an officer who came to close down the restaurant. He fled to Afghanistan before the case was resolved, according to the Times.

According to the Times, Ahmad Rahami eventually took over the day-to-day operations of the restaurant.

“When it first opened it was the father 24 hours a day,” Ryan McCann, told the newspaper. “He’s a very friendly guy, he gave me free chicken. He was always the most friendly man you ever met.”

McCann said Ahmad Rahami wore Western clothes, and loves cars. McCann ate at the restaurant two weeks ago and said Rahami was talking about them.

“He always talked about fast Honda civics, about how he loved them,” McCann said. “He was having a conversation about his cars,” Mr. McCann said. “How he likes to soup ’em up and race ’em. He’s a guy you would never expect. This is sad, terrifying, scary.”

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3. Rahami’s Father Sued the City of Elizabeth & His Neighbors, Saying They Were Discriminated Against for Being Muslim



Rahami’s father sued the city of Elizabeth, the city’s police department, several officers, and his neighbor in federal court in 2011, alleging they violated his civil rights by discriminating against him. Mohammad Rahami and two of Ahmad’s brothers filed the lawsuit in New Jersey federal court.

The Rahamis argued that they were targeted by the city, police and their neighbors because of their ethnicity and Muslim religion, according to the lawsuit. They said that starting in July 2008 they were “subjected to citations and summonses for allegedly violating a local ordinace regulating hours of operation for certain businesses, in particular rquiring certain establishments to close by 10 p.m.”

“Despite their legal right to keep the restaurant open past 10 p.m., defendants, each and every one of them, with reckless disregard and deliberate indifference to plaintiffs’ constitutional rights of liberty, due process, and equal protection embarked on a course of conduct to harass, humiliate, intimidate, retaliate against and force plaintiffs to close their business by 10 p.m. by filing complaints, tickets, summonses and charges relating to the subject ordinance, claiming that the business hours of the restaurant needed to be limtied. The tickets summons and complaints were all baseless, unfounded and designed solely to intimidate and harass plaintiffs.”

You can read the lawsuit below:

Mohammad Rahami and his sons alleged one neighbor who complained to the police often told them “you are Muslims” and “Muslims make too much trouble in this country,” among other comments singling them out based on their race, religion and national origin, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit was dismissed in 2012, according to court records. It remained open pending an appeal of the dismissal, but no action in the case has occurred since 2015. The attorney who represented the family in the initial filing could not be reached for comment.

Elizabeth Mayor Cameron Bollwage told the New York Times there was no discrimination by the city.

“It was neighbor complaints, it had nothing to do with his ethnicity or religion,” the mayor told the Times. “It had to do with noise and people congregating on the streets.”

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4. Police Removed Evidence, Including Hard Drives, From the Home of Rahami’s Family & Towed a Car From the Scene

Police removed evidence, including hard drives, from Rahami’s family home during the raid Monday morning, NBC New York reports.

Two cars, a white sedan and a black Toyota Camry, were towed from the scene, FiOS1 News reports.

It is not known if any members of Rahami’s family was at the home at the time of the raid.

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5. Ahmad Rahami Was Arrested After a Shootout With Police in Linden

The suspect accused in bombings in New York and New Jersey has been taken into custody following a shootout in Linden, New Jersey, about four miles from his hometown of Elizabeth, NBC New York reports.

Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, was arrested Monday about 11 a.m. after an exchange of gunfire with police, the news station reports.

NBC News reports that Rahami was being taken to a local hospital.

One officer was shot, taking a round to his vest, the New York Sergeants Benevolent Association said on Twitter. The officer suffered non-life-threatening injuries, NBC reports.

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  1. America will always be a target for shit like this because it’s built off of greed. Racism stolen land built off of slavery white people have build a corrupt system. Which they cannot tame and Americans we our are worst enemies.

    • You are so ignorant that all I can do is feel sorry for you. You deserve to be exiled from America. That would be a good lesson for you…

    • Let’s talk GREED. 500 years b4 the crusades Arabic Muslims invaded North Africa offeed Black Berbers the “opportunity” to sell their brothers into slavery and fight for Caliph in North Africa or be executed, then the Arabs Spain, sacked Timbuktu and enslaved Blacks in sub-Saharan Africa years latre. Source: Cornell West. They offered the Zoroastrian Parsi in what is now Iran the same deal. They invaded what is now Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.. The Parsi converts in Iran objected to second class status to their Arab conquerers and now fellow Muslims so much that they assassinated Mohammed’s immediate successor (stabbed in the gut-look it up). Akhbar swept into India, pushed as far south as present day Pune, until Shivaji pushed him back North. He couldn’t conquer Punjab, because the SIKHs kicked his ass. The “religion of peace” went from Mohammed’s eviction from Mecca to conquering half of Spain within 80 years, because they WEREN’T aggressors? C’mon! I guess the Barberry pirates, like their present day counterparts WEREN’T INTERESTED in stealing. THe Ottoman Turks stole territory that took them as far as Vienna because they really want to enlighten us? They felt the need to kidnap very young children, raise them as Muslim Janissaries, sne them back to rule over their own parents as emissaries of the “religion of peace”. The last Sultans were so corrupt, and such spendthrifts, that they had to borrow from these now autonomous non-Turkish Janissaries. YEAH, GREED IS ONLY A WHITE DISEASE. I MIGHT TAKE THIS LECTURE FROM AFRICAN AMERICANS, OR FIRST NATIONS TYPES (the latter have their own baggage vis a vis each other), but the MUSLIMS can kiss it!

  2. Muslims are not the enemy. Muslims do not drink, smoke, or eat pork. These people are immigrants from Afghanistan, don’t mistake them for devout Muslims. It’s sad that Americans are so misinformed about other religions, especially Eastern, for Christianity came from the Middle East where Jesus and the disciples also came from. Christianity has evolved from the several types practiced at the time of Constantine, who legislated reform of christianity changing the worship day from Saturday to Sunday to create one day for the christians and pagans to observe a day of rest together.

    • Then “devout” Muslims better start speaking up and speaking out loud against this. So far, “devout” muslims have been pretty damn quiet since 9/11. wonder why? Particularly when a compliant media would give them all the air time or print time they wanted to defend their faith. So far, it’s only been the american left and their lapdogs in the media defending Islam.

    • While it’s true that not all Muslims are terrorists, all terrorists to date have been Muslim. We are tired of anti-American deviants blowing up our cities and property, and trying to kill Americans. Most of us get the root of Christianity and Constantine, but that is not the topic here. Whether Muslims drink, smoke or eat pork is also not the topic, but bombing is. We are not really feeling your sympathy…

      • Tell that to Timothy McVeigh the Oklahoma bomber or Adam Lanza the Sandy Hook shooter. How quickly we forget. Now tell us about the truth again?


      • I’m sorry to say that you’re wrong Timothy McVeigh was not a Muslim so not all terrorists are Muslim summer born in the good old us of a

    • Possibly the stupidest “look I know a few facts” commentary ever. What does halal practices do to make people good or peaceful? Answer: nothing, not a damn thing. Being Afghan hardly takes Islam out of the equation, it just adds another angle still less than the Quranic dictate to kill and strike terror into the hearts of infidels.

    • Buddy you are the one who is sadly misinformed and obtuse. Do some research on the Quran, the number of Muslim related murders worldwide just over the past few years (you’ll have to narrow it to a few years because it’s a lot of info), and the countries who have allowed hordes of Muslims in and how they have changed for the worse. They do not assimilate and in fact part of the plan to spread Islam and Sharia Law is to migrate and have lots of children; and do what they can to screw the host country – case in point: the UK. Wake up and smell the Jihad coming your way.

    • You are either naive or devious. Muslims follow the koran which dictates all infidels be put in the fire….that is more than enough right there.

    • Quran Sura 4, Women Sounds very progressive, enlightened. But Mohammed “married” a seven year old, and “consummated” the “union” when she was 9. Yeeech! (CHECK OUT HOW NON-CONCILIATORY HE GOT BY SURA #9, WHEN HE INCREASED THE NUMBER OF ARMED FOLLOWERS.) Things that are haram include NOT forcing a woman into marriage. Then please tell me why fathers attempt to “marry” their daughters to men thirty years older, often in return for a business or financial concession, and kill their own daughters when they object.. If drugs are considered haram, and harmful, then why sell them to the “non’believers” if not for GREED. FINALLY, if something should be properly forbidden, why is the punishment draconian. Exhibit A, from 1979 to 1982, Iranian Muslim women who didn’t comply with certain sexual “demands” of the new religious police were flogged or in one case hung from a crane, when her veil fell off in court when she complained. A seventy year old Brit had three bottles of homemade wine in his car trunk, and he was imprisoned and flogged in excess of 200 times. In contrast, the entire Rahami family is radicalized because one complainant used a slur and the city passed an ordinance compelling them (and I’m sure other similar businesses in the same area) to close at 10. SHARIA COURTS CAN IMPOSE A LENGTHY LIST OF SEVERE RESTRICTIONS, ENFORCE THESE HARSHLY, BUT WE CAN’T. SAY CLOSE AT 10 PLEASE. SAY PLEASE CLOSE AT 10. JIHADIST CLERICS CAN ATTEMPT TO CONVERT NON-MUSLIMS AND PERSUADE THEM TO ATTACK US, BUT ATLEAST ELEVEN MUSLIM MAJORITY COUNTRIES PUNISH APOSTASY (CONVERTING) WITH DEATH ACCORDING TO THEIR OWN LAWS.

      Live with us in a multicultural, ecumenical country, but accept that we are a constitutional democracy– not a Caliphate or Xenophobic, insular, intolerant, Paternalistic (stealth misogynistic) overly punitive theocracy. Also, do not retaliate against every PERCEIVED slight WITH DEADLY FORCE.
      Do not project your frustrations with a reasonable demand by municipal authorities in Elizabeth NJ, upon other municipalities that had nothing to do with it.
      Atleast, most of our prior adversaries had the guts to attack us on the battlefield.. When we had unfortunately caused civilian casualties, it was not our objective.. It is the JIHADIS only objective, and they are COWARDS.

  3. What percentage of the last ten years of terrorist attacks were committed by the followers of Islam? 90, 95, 98 percent ? Over past year or so there has been a Islamic terrorists attack every 84 hours. They are our Enemy. If we don’t stop them, our grandchildren will curse us and we will deserve it.

  4. Wait a second all you people are being dicks but don’t understand he was a n amazingly nice person and I started eating there when it first opened tbey were always so nice so stop saying all this bull shit about him if you don’t even know who he is

    • Alex … Well said, Thankyou
      So many people have strong opinions based on reading articles. If they would just live a week in their lives they’d all see differently. So many non Muslim terrors attacks never ever reported. People are just blind with the exception of their tunnel vision.
      Fear leads to anger, leads to terror, leads to fear and the cycle continues. Education, love and understanding can beat it all but no one cares to participate in that route.


  5. They should start deporting the whole families of every scumbag bomber, all of them, immediately – fathers, mothers, siblings, children, aunts and uncles … only then there will be at least a bit of hope

    • Boycott their fine establishment, they will get the point pretty quick that they are NOT WELCOME when they pull this type of behavior.

  6. When you are accused of being a Muslim, and that Muslims only create violence, what better way for a Muslim to defend themselves than to create violence. Also, a reminder folks: Islam (Muslim) is a religion, not a race.

    • Timeline? Did anyone accuse that family of violence before it occurred? No. Also, if you can hire a lawyer to fight a non-discriminatory ordinance requiring you to close at 10 –and falsely accuse them of discrimination–then you can more effectively use the same lawyer to bring a defamation suit. Seems like the Rahamis are the knee jerkers here.

  7. This is a hard working family in a immigrant neighborhood. Many diverse ethnicities, all seeming to get along. If I am correct, the man that identified him, was a East Indian Gentleman. He said” any American would have done the same thing, that’s what keeps a strong country.” So, all the hyperbole of of “oh, immigrants, bad!!” Is just plain silly. We are not like Europe. We do not segregate immigrants into slum areas. We assimilate people into our communities, where they can thrive.

  8. All that experience working at his parents fried chicken store will come in handy in jail……………..all those black prisoners……………they LOVE fried chicken………….he can be in charge of cooking it for them.

  9. So to the writer of this article you are saying if someone doesn’t like you, does it give u the right to Blo up the neighborhoo??