For Immediate Release
Schenectady Man Charged in Connection with Shots Fired Outside of Temple Israel
ALBANY, N.Y. — Mufid Fawaz Alkhader, age 28, of Schenectady, appeared in federal court this morning on a charge of unlawfully possessing a firearm. Alkhader was arrested yesterday afternoon after he twice fired a shotgun into the air outside of Temple Israel, a synagogue in Albany.
The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Carla B. Freedman; John B. DeVito, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Craig L. Tremaroli, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Albany Police Chief Eric Hawkins.
According to the criminal complaint, at approximately 2 p.m. on Dec. 7, Alkhader stood outside of Temple Israel while possessing a Kel-Tec KS7 12-gauge pump-action shotgun. Alkhader twice fired the shotgun into the air. Albany Police Officers responded to the scene and arrested Alkhader. As an unlawful user of a controlled substance (marijuana), Alkhader was prohibited under federal law from possessing the shotgun. The charges in the complaint are merely accusations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Alkhader appeared today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Christian F. Hummel, who ordered Alkhader detained pending trial after Alkhader waived his right to a detention hearing.
If convicted of the charge alleged in the complaint, Alkhader faces up to 15 years in prison, up to three years of post-imprisonment supervised release, and a maximum fine of $250,000. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other factors.
This case is being investigated by the ATF, the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Albany Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rick Belliss and Alexander Wentworth-Ping are prosecuting this case.