Did Hotel Security and Police Stop a Las Vegas-Style Massacre in Indianapolis?
Ahmed Alaklouk, 22, is a Tunisian by birth, a Saudi by citizenship, and his student visa expired in September of 2017. He wasn’t supposed to have guns. But Hyatt Regency hotel security and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police saw that his vehicle contained an AR with a bump stock/scope/bipod on the front seat, and 6 handguns in the back seat. All on the day of the Women’s March in January. The hotel overlooked that venue. He now faces Federal charges as well as criminal charges from another incident.
When hotel security noted the number of firearms in the vehicle, they immediately called IMPD. Federal law prohibits someone who is in the country illegally from owning firearms. As police were investigating the vehicle, Alaklouk appreached and told them the vehicle was his. Police, not yet aware of his immigration status, advised him to secure the weapons out of sight or in the hotel safe.
The IndyStar reported,
Alaklouk unlocked the truck and moved the rifle to the back seat, records say.
As Alaklouk moved the rifle, officers saw that the weapon — which had been modified to function and look like an AR-15 — also contained a scope, bipod and bump stock.
Alaklouk told police his rifle was “fully tricked out” and belonged to his father, according to court documents…
…Around 7:45 a.m., hotel security again looked through the truck window and saw the rifle near the passenger seat. Security remained concerned because Alaklouk’s hotel room overlooked the gathering area of the Women’s March planned for that day. At least 3,500 people would later attend the march.
Security and IMPD removed Alaklouk, and two other unidentified men in the room, from the hotel later that morning.
The incident prompted the DHS to investigate Alaklouk’s immigrant status, and they learned that his visa had expired in September. Meanwhile, another gun incident occurred at his tire shop a week later.
A woman purchased a tire from the Medo Tire Shop, which is owned by Ahmed Alaklouk. It did not hold air, so she and her father went back to the shop. An argument ensued, which led to a fight.
According to the IndyStar, the suspect grabbed her father by the neck and threw him on the ground, and pulled a handgun. Another employee also pulled a handgun. The woman went to her car and took out a handgun and fired it into the air. Alaklouk went back inside the store and retrieved a rifle, and threatened to kill the two people. He had the employee hold them while he moved his truck to block their car from leaving. The woman called police. He dropped his gun when police arrived.
The handguns were pellet guns that resembled semi-automatics. Police did find a 9mm inside his house later.
Turns out he lied to police in the first incident, and likely lied in the second. First he told police that he got the rifle from his father. The second time he told them the firearm was an exchange from a customer. It is apparent he isn’t interested in telling police the truth about the rifle. So where did it really come from, considering he is not supposed to possess firearms at all?
Alaklouk was charged on Jan. 31 with two felony counts of criminal confinement, two felony counts of intimidation, one felony count of unlawful possession of a firearm and a battery misdemeanor. Federal charges were leveled on Wednesday, March 7. An ICE detainer was placed on him at Marion County Jail.
What was he planning the day he had so many firearms in his truck? Who were the other two men in the hotel room the day he was removed? Why was he in a hotel – a high end one- when he was a business owner in the city and apparently had a house of his own? Was he planning to kill the women involved in the march? Or was the hotel meeting for something else? Many questions, few answers.