The attorney for Michael Adams, the Arizona man who was charged for the stabbing of 17-year-old Elijah Al-Amin, argued that the attack was not racially motivated but instead due to Adams’ mental illness. According to the state Department of Corrections, Adams was not designated as seriously mentally ill.
What We Know:
- On July 4, Adams stabbed Al-Amin to death outside of a convince store because he felt “threatened” by the teens hip hop music. Adams had been released from prison on July 2, after serving a 13-month sentence for aggravated assault and removal of a theft detection device.
- DOC spokesperson Andrew Wilder wrote in a statement that Adams was not designated as mentally ill and stated, “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. The tragic death is terrible, and Mr. Adams will have to answer for his alleged actions.”
- Adams’ attorney Jacie Cotterell claimed that the DOC failed Adams. She told Good Evening Arizona, “This is a disabled person and he’s been released into the world and left to fend for himself, two days later. This is where we are.”
- The statement also stated that after Adams was transported from the state prison complex, they “had no further legal authority over him.”
A makeshift memorial was set up outside of the Circle K store where Al-Amin was killed. Al-Amin would have turned 18 in two weeks.