Court of Appeals Upholds Murder Conviction for Elias Abuelazam
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton announced Wednesday that a state appeals court has upheld the murder conviction and life sentence of Elias Abuelazam. The 37-year-old Abuelazam was convicted in June 2012 of first degree murder in the 2010 stabbing death of Arnold Minor.
The Court of Appeals released its opinion on Tuesday, June 10 saying that Genesee County Circuit Court Judge Judith Fullerton was correct in not approving a pre-trial motion for a change of venue, in denying a mistrial after the term "serial" described the stabbings and in allowing evidence of other stabbings. Abuelazam also appealed the trial court's assessment of $130 crime victims rights fee during sentencing.
In a news release, Leyton said "during the summer of 2010, this man terrorized our community. We are obviously pleased with the Court of Appeals ruling."
Abuelazam is also suspected in series of other stabbings in Flint and surrounding communities that left five others dead and nine seriously injured. He is also a suspect in stabbings that took place in Ohio and Virginia.
Abuelazam, who pleaded insanity at trial to rebut he acted with premeditation, is currently lodged at the Gus Harrison Correctional Facility in Adrian.