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Police: 17-year-old stabbed, killed at Peoria Circle K

Posted: 11:31 AM, Jul 04, 2019
Updated: 2019-07-11 11:36:58-04
KNXV Michael Adams Peoria Stabbing.jpeg

PEORIA, AZ — A 17-year-old is dead after being stabbed at a Circle K located near 67th and Peoria avenues, according to police.

Officers say they arrived on scene "within one minute of the original [911] call."

At 1:42 a.m., police say they found the teen lying face down by the fuel pumps outside the Circle K.

The 17-year-old Glendale resident, identified by family as Elijah Alamin, was stabbed on the right side of his neck by a suspect who then fled the scene, according to court documents.

Elijah Alamin

Alamin, was transported to an area hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 2:05 a.m.

Police identified the suspect as 27-year-old Michael Adams.

Police could not initially identify a relation between Alamin and Adams, "as there [did] not appear to be any relation between the two and no known motive."

Court documents obtained by ABC15 show that Adams allegedly told detectives the teen "did not do anything to threaten him" and "the victim did not say anything to threaten him."

Adams allegedly later admitted to detectives that he heard Alamin listening to "rap music in the parking lot" through the victim's window.

"Rap music makes him [Adams] feel unsafe, because in the past he has been attacked... by people who listen to rap music," Adams continued to tell detectives.

Adams allegedly told detectives the "rap music," not the victim, made him feel "threatened," and Adams needed to be "proactive rather than reactive... [and to] protect himself and the community from the victim."

Adams was arrested near the crime scene after allegedly admitting to police he was involved in the stabbing, with blood on his clothes and body and a pocket knife in his possession.

The suspect's family told ABC15 they believe Adams was on his way to visit his daughter.

"I think she was his first thought, first priority, he just wanted to go see his daughter, and he stopped here, and something happened," said Macey Adams, who identified herself as the suspect's sister.

She told ABC15 her brother had recently been released from the Department of Corrections and isn't sure what sparked the violent encounter. ABC15 has confirmed that Adams was released from jail on July 2, in connection to previous charges, including aggravated assault.

"I understand what he did was terrible," she said. "I want [people] to understand that it wasn't who he is, and he was experiencing mental health issues."

Jacie Cotterell, the suspect's lawyer, said it's unfortunate that the state let Adams out knowing that he is a person diagnosed with mental issues.

“ My client is a very unfortunate young man. He suffers from what are some obvious mental illnesses, he’s been ill served by the state,” Cotterell said.

A spokesperson for the Arizona Department of Corrections released the following statement regarding Adam's release:

By law, Inmate Adams was released from ADC custody on July 2 on an absolute discharge, after completing his prison sentence. Arizona and/or federal privacy laws preclude the Department from disclosing specific confidential medical information. Prior to his release, Inmate Adams was provided contact information for services in the community such as continuing care, housing, welfare as well as other community resources. He was not designated seriously mentally ill (SMI). Upon release, he was provided transportation from ASPC-Yuma to Maricopa County, after which he was no longer under the Department’s legal jurisdiction and the Department had no further legal authority over him. The tragic death is terrible, and Mr. Adams will have to answer for his alleged actions.

The suspect's sister says she feels for Alamin's family.

"I'm very sorry about the whole situation," she said. "I'm sorry to the victim, he was 17, and he had a long life ahead of him... I'm very sorry to the whole family that had to experience it."

The Alamin family says the mental health illness excuse from the suspects family in no way justifies the life that has been taken from them.

"The fact that someone is trying to claim that that's the reason why my brother's life was taken is just an excuse and it doesn't help, it doesn't lend any type of consolement it doesn't help at all," Mariah Alamin said. “I feel like the 17 years he spent on this earth he made the most of it and he did more for anybody than most people do in their whole lifetime.”

Alamin's family said the teen had two jobs, one at Subway and one at Auto Zone. His family says he had big dreams of owning his business one day and he was 'bigger than life' and was always giving onto others.

Police say the investigation into the teen's death is ongoing and additional charges are possible.

Adams faces a first degree murder charge in this case, according to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office.