INWOOD, Manhattan — A 28-year-old bodega worker stabbed to death in Inwood on Wednesday night was just months away from becoming a father.
Mohamed Nasser Awawdah was stabbed in the chest when he confronted a group of men loitering outside the bodega where he worked, police sources said. Awawdah worked long hours at Dyckman Kwik Stop to support his family.
Fernando Mateo, of United Bodegas of America, went to Awawdah's home in New Rochelle to meet with the victim's family.
"The family is inconsolable," he said.
Awawdah's wife is seven months pregnant.
People who knew the victim describe him as a hardworking man.
“I hope whoever did this knows that this doesn’t make you a tough guy, [it] makes you a punk," Carlos Rodriquez said. "[A] tough guy is someone like that [who] works 12-20 hours a day to support his family.”
As police hunt for the man who took Awawdah’s life, community leaders say they want to see more police patrol in this northern Manhattan neighborhood. They also want panic buttons inside of all bodegas across the city.
Mateo said bodega owners have to protect themselves too, especially because many of the businesses are located in high-crime areas.
No arrests have been made. United bodegas of America is offering a $2,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.
Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting http://www.nypdcrimestoppers.com, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).