Rocker kills members of Yellow Dogs, himself - Houston weather, traffic, news | FOX 26 | MyFoxHouston

Rocker kills members of Yellow Dogs, himself

Posted: Updated:

By COLLEEN LONG and TOM HAYS

NEW YORK (AP) — Iranian musicians Soroush and Arash Farazmand came to the United States to pursue their passion — playing music in an indie rock band called the Yellow Dogs. Instead of achieving fame for their songs, they gained notoriety for their horrific deaths.

The brothers were among three men shot and killed in their Brooklyn apartment early Monday by a fellow musician who police say was upset over being kicked out of another Iranian band.

"They wanted to be known for their music," Yellow Dogs manager Ali Salehezadeh said. "I guess now we have a gun story. ... It's so sad."

The Yellow Dogs came from Iran three years ago after appearing in a film about the underground music scene there. The brothers were a guitarist and a drummer who had just received political asylum. The bass player and singer weren't home at the time of the bloodshed and weren't harmed.

Police said gunman Ali Akbar Mahammadi Rafie, 29, killed himself on the roof after struggling with a survivor of his former band, the Free Keys. Investigators believe a guitar case found on an adjoining roof may have been used to carry the assault rifle used in the attack.

Rafie "was upset that he wasn't in the band anymore" New York Police Department spokesman John McCarthy said. Investigators suspect the shooter and his former bandmates may have had an argument over money, he added.

Another person killed, Ali Eskandarian, was also a musician but not in the band; the wounded man was an artist.

The row house in the industrial neighborhood of East Williamsburg where the victims lived had been a hangout for artists who attended parties there. The musicians all knew one another, the manager said.

But Rafie hadn't spoken to the victims in months because of a "very petty conflict," Salehezadeh said, declining to give specifics.

"There was a decision not to be around each other," he said. "They were never that close to begin with. ... This was nothing. We thought it was all behind us."

The rampage erupted when the gunman climbed over an adjoining roof to the home, then down to a third-floor terrace where he opened fire through a window, killing the 35-year-old Eskandarian. The shooter then killed Arash Farazmand, 28, in a third-floor bedroom and Soroush Farazmand, 27, in a second-floor bedroom while he was on a bed using his laptop computer, police said.

The fourth tenant was hit in the arm before Rafie and his former bandmate struggled over the gun until the clip fell out, police said. Rafie put the clip back in the rifle, went back to the roof and shot himself in the head, police said.

The gun was found next to the body. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said it had been purchased in upstate New York in 2006 and police were investigating its history.

Originally from Tehran, the Yellow Dogs were the subject of a 2009 film, "No One Knows about Persian Cats," which told the semi-fictional tale of a band that played illegal rock shows in Tehran. The film won a prize at the Cannes festival.

The band came to the United States to pursue the dream of playing rock music in an open society, their manager said.

"You can't be a rock star in Iran," Salehezadeh said. "It's against cultural law. You can't grow there as a band."

The group played recent gigs in New York at small but hip venues like the Knitting Factory and Brooklyn Bowl, and their dance music sound is a little like Joy Division.

"They were great kids who people just loved," Salehezadeh said. "They looked cool and they played great music. ... They wanted to be known for their music. Now we're not going to get to do that."

A friend of the brothers' family, Golbarg Bashi described the family as "very progressive, very open-minded."

Salehezadeh said the victims' relatives were stunned by the violence.

"People don't own guns in Iran," he said. "We don't have this problem there. It doesn't exist."

___

Associated Press writers Deepti Hajela, Jennifer Peltz and Meghan Barr and researcher Rhonda Shafner contributed to this report.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Brooklyn NewsBrooklyn NewsMore>>

  • NYC's pickup basketball games moving indoors

    NYC's pickup basketball games moving indoors

    Thursday, July 24 2014 5:54 PM EDT2014-07-24 21:54:18 GMT
    Believe it or not this, some say New York's outdoor basketball courts are a dying entity. Even Rucker Park in Harlem -- where Dr. J and countless others honed their skills -- used to be standing room only all times of the day. Now there's plenty of room to stand on most days.Basketball programs like one at Chelsea Piers are gaining popularity. That means the place to hoop it up for many appears to be indoors.
    Believe it or not this, some say New York's outdoor basketball courts are a dying entity. Even Rucker Park in Harlem -- where Dr. J and countless others honed their skills -- used to be standing room only all times of the day. Now there's plenty of room to stand on most days.Basketball programs like one at Chelsea Piers are gaining popularity. That means the place to hoop it up for many appears to be indoors.
  • Dunkin' Donuts cashiers will try to 'upsell' you in the afternoon

    Dunkin' Donuts cashiers will try to 'upsell' you in the afternoon

    Thursday, July 24 2014 2:30 PM EDT2014-07-24 18:30:38 GMT
    Dunkin' Donuts handout photoDunkin' Donuts handout photo
    If an iced coffee from Dunkin' Donuts is part of your afternoon routine, expect a nudge to buy a cookie or doughnut you didn't plan on. Dunkin' Brands CEO Nigel Travis said in a phone interview Thursday that the company is pushing to get its cashiers to "upsell" to afternoon customers. It's part of an effort to increase sales after stores have emptied out after the morning rush.
    If an iced coffee from Dunkin' Donuts is part of your afternoon routine, expect a nudge to buy a cookie or doughnut you didn't plan on. Dunkin' Brands CEO Nigel Travis said in a phone interview Thursday that the company is pushing to get its cashiers to "upsell" to afternoon customers. It's part of an effort to increase sales after stores have emptied out after the morning rush.
  • Bratton: 'not happy'

    NYPD identify suspects in raising of white flags at Brooklyn Bridge

    NYPD identify suspects in raising of white flags at Brooklyn Bridge

    Thursday, July 24 2014 7:48 AM EDT2014-07-24 11:48:41 GMT
    The NYPD says they have identified the suspects for the major security breach that had white flags replace the American flags at the Brooklyn Bridge, one of the most highly secured landmarks in New York City, according to the New York Post. Police say they only know the suspects by nicknames, not their legitimate names. They are working on getting their names in order to bring the suspects in for questioning. The Post says nearly three dozen detectives were on the case. 
    The NYPD says they have identified the suspects for the major security breach that had white flags replace the American flags at the Brooklyn Bridge, one of the most highly secured landmarks in New York City, according to the New York Post. Police say they only know the suspects by nicknames, not their legitimate names. They are working on getting their names in order to bring the suspects in for questioning. The Post says nearly three dozen detectives were on the case. 
Powered by WorldNow

KRIV FOX 26
4261 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX 77027

Phone: (713) 479-2801
Fax: (713) 479-2859

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices