Video captures Florida store owner firing at customer with AK-47

The store owner said that he feared for his life but police said the video evidence never showed the customer brandishing a weapon.

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By Doha Madani

Video released Tuesday shows a Florida store owner firing an AK-47 to shoot an unarmed customer after a verbal dispute on Christmas Eve 2017.

Saf Ahmad, the owner of a Kwik Pic convenience store in Lauderhill, Florida, was arrested in December 2017 on a charge of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon after shooting Jason Morris, according to a Broward County Sheriff's Office report.

The store owner has claimed that he fired the AK 47 in self-defense after Morris got into his car and threw something, later identified as a bottle of Castor Oil, at the store.

Ahmad's next hearing is set for November 1.

Surveillance video from inside and outside the store released by the store owner's attorneys shows the confrontation and the moment Ahmad fired the AK-47.

Morris is seen on the video getting into a verbal disagreement with a store employee and kicking over a large trash can into the store before exiting. He then threw another trash can from outside the store before he got into his car, the video shows.

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Morris drove in circles in the parking lot, left the video's frame, and then came back to throw something at the store.

Ahmad is then seen running out of the Kwik Pic with an AK-47 and shooting Morris in the back with the military-style weapon as Morris drove away, causing Morris to suffer a permanent disability. In other video footage directed at the store's front door, two other employees can be seen with two handguns as well.

According to the original 2017 police report, Morris claimed that he went to the store on Christmas Eve to complain about a previous incident in which his friend was beaten outside the Kwik Pic. Morris said he told the employees about alleged illegal activities at the store and that customers had been threatened with violence.

Morris told police he left the store after the argument escalated and the men inside pulled out weapons, according to police documents. He said he tried to leave the store but had to return to the parking lot because the street he exited on did not go through to the main road. Morris admitted to police that he threw a bottle at the store and that's when Ahmad began shooting.

Ahmad, who has claimed self-defense with Florida's Stand Your Ground Law, told police that he saw Morris pull out a handgun when he went into his car and that Morris came into the store threatening to kill him and other employees, according to the 2017 arrest report.

Police disputed Ahmad's claim after reviewing video and finding no evidence of Morris brandishing a firearm.

Ahmad's attorney, Andrew Rier, said he disagreed with the police assessment that Ahmad wasn't in danger.

"Mr. Ahmed did not provoke a confrontation, the confrontation was brought to Mr. Ahmed and he defended himself," Rier said Tuesday.

In a court filing from July, Ahmad's lawyer said that the owner feared the bottle thrown at the store might have been a grenade.

"In this case, Mr. Ahmad believed he had no choice but to use force necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself as well as others present," the filing stated.