Imran Ali Rasheed: Isabella Lewis Murder in Texas May Be Terrorism Related

imran ali rasheed

Police release Imran Ali Rasheed and Isabella Lewis

Imran Ali Rasheed was identified as the Texas man who fired a gun at a police employee in the Plano Police Department’s lobby after murdering a Lyft driver, Isabella Lewis. Authorities now say they are investigating whether the shootings were terrorism-related.

Rasheed, 33, of Garland, Texas, was shot and killed in the lobby by police who responded to his gunfire, Plano police say. The Plano Police Department is “the largest law enforcement agency in the northern Dallas metropolitan area,” they noted.

Authorities found a note in the Lyft driver’s car which led police to contact the FBI, Garland, Texas, Police Chief Jeff Bryan said in a news conference. However, he did not reveal the contents of that note. Rasheed “may have been inspired by foreign terrorism organizations to commit these crimes,” said Matthew J. DeSarno, the special agent in charge of the FBI’s Dallas office, in the news conference. DeSarno said he did not want to name the organization to give it attention, and he also wouldn’t release the contents of the note.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force Is Investigating

DeSarno, the special agent in charge of the FBI’s Dallas office, stressed in a news conference that it was early in the ivnestigation, but the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force has joined the investigation to determine “what led to the incidents and whether they were an act of terrorism.”

“We do not believe the suspect was provided assistance by others or that others were involved in these incidents. However, it’s a top investigative priority for us to determine the extent of his relationships and contacts.”

Bryan said authorities believe Lewis and Rasheed did not know each other.

“We believe he was inspired by rhetoric or propaganda of a foreign terrorist organization,” said DeSarno, but he said he was not directed by it.

2. Police Discovered the Body of Lewis, But Her Car Was Missing

In the press conference on August 30, 2021, Bryan said that, on August 29, the Garland police department responded to a call involving a gunshot wound victim.

They located a deceased victim identified as 26-year-old Isabella Lewis, of Garland. They discovered that the victim’s car was missing. They learned Lewis was a Lyft driver who had recently picked up a rider who was on her notifications to be picked up. Police learned he was Imran Ali Rasheed.

Lewis’s car was then found in the Plano Police Department’s parking lot, where the suspect had entered the PD and started shooting. The suspect in Plano was also Rasheed, Bryan said.

3. Rasheed Fired a Gun in the Lobby of the Plano Police Department, Authorities Say

According to an August 29, 2021, media advisory from the Plano Police Department, around 12:15 p.m on August 29, Plano Police Officers “responded to a Meet Complainant incident in front of the Plano Police Department Headquarters (909 14th Street). The incident described a male, wearing a black shirt and mask, who was behaving erratically.”

Prior to officers’ arrival, the male, now identified as Rasheed, “entered the lobby of the Police Department twice; upon entering the lobby the second time, he displayed a handgun. He then raised his handgun and fired in the direction of a civilian police employee who was assisting a citizen in the lobby,” the advisory said.

“The civilian employee and visitor both took shelter in a secure room off the lobby of the Police Department. At that time, two police officers responded from inside the building and engaged the suspect. The suspect was shot and transported by Plano Fire Rescue…No police employees or visitors, other than the suspect, were injured during this incident. This incident is currently being investigated by the Plano Police Crimes Against Persons Unit and the Collin County District Attorney’s Office.”

Plano Police Chief Ed Drain also identified the shooter in the lobby as Rasheed. He was carrying a semi-automatic pistol. He said the civilian employee tried to deescalate the situation, but Rasheed shot in her direction. Officers inside the building heard those shots being fired. They made their way to the lobby.

4. There Is a GoFundMe Page to Help Lewis’s Family

isabella Lewis

GoFundMeIsabella Lewis

A GoFundMe page was set up to help the family of Lewis.

“Our beloved Bella Ann was taken too soon on the morning of Sunday, August 29th. She was a wonderful daughter, sister and friend who touched the lives of those around her. She leaves behind her mother, sisters, nieces, nephews, cousins and a boyfriend,” it reads.

“We are all devastated by her loss and appreciate the outpouring of support we have received from family, friends and community members. We want to give Bella the memorial she deserves, to honor her memory and say our last goodbyes and I am currently asking for donations to help cover the cost of Bella’s funeral. We need to raise $5000 in order to be able to afford the funeral service.”

5. There Was a Previous Counter-Terrorism Investigation Involving Rasheed

Rasheed was the subject of a Dallas FBI counterterrorism investigation from 2010 to 2013, said DeSarno.

“All investigative steps were taken. I’m comfortable the investigation was done thoroughly and properly,” he said.

That case was then closed it was determined that Rasheed did not pose a threat at that time, DeSarno said. That investigation was initially opened to see if he was involved in activities with foreign terrorist organizations and was a threat to the public.

Plano’s police chief said authorities have no idea why he came to Plano. They say they have no record of any prior contacts with him.

According to the Dallas Morning News, Rasheed did not have a Texas criminal history. He did have a traffic accident in Garland about a decade ago, the newspaper reported.

Authorities don’t believe that Lewis was specifically targeted by Rasheed; they believe he ordered a Lyft, and killed her when she was the Lyft driver who showed up.

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