Saturday, 30 August 2014

Police Officer Killed Woman, Lit Her On Fire After ‘Romantic Encounter’(PICTURED)

 An Atlanta police officer was busted trying to skip town Thursday, nearly one week after he kidnapped a woman he met online, took her to a secluded suburban area, shot her and then set her dead body on fire, police said.

Tahreem Zeus Rana, 23, was caught around 8:30 a.m. Thursday after he tried to board a flight to Monterey, Mexico, possibly en route to India, WSB-TV reported.

The murder suspect was on the no-fly list, cops said, and has since been fired.

"We are shocked and saddened by these developments,” the department said of the three-year veteran. “The officer has been relieved from duty, and is in a non-enforcement status."
 Rana met 26-year-old Vernicia Woodard on for a “romantic exchange” in Rana’s hometown of Hapeville, a southern Atlanta suburb, police there said. He took the woman to a rural part of the town, shot her several times, then lit her on fire, police said.

A city worker found the burning body on Elm Street the morning of Aug. 22, the news station reported.

 "He took her to a secluded area to do the crime and then, after killing her, used some kind of fuel to light her body on fire," Hapeville police Detective Stephen Cushing told the station.

Police believe he used his service weapon to kill the Woodard, mother to an 8-year-old. He became the prime suspect after the woman’s phone records led investigators to and eventually Rana, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Hapeville police considered Rana, who grew up in the town, a suspect as of Wednesday. Hapeville police considered Rana, who grew up in the town, a suspect as of Wednesday.

 Rana allegedly used his service weapon to kill the woman, cops said.

A “wanted” poster featuring Rana’s picture was released to the public Wednesday.

The murder comes as a shock to Hapeville police officers, who recalled watching Rana grow up in the community. He had a clean disciplinary file.

"I've been a police officer in city of Hapeville for 15 years and actually saw this young man grow up and heard him say, 'When I grow up, I want to be a police officer," Det. Cushing told the station.

Rana faces charges of murder, arson, kidnapping and tampering with evidence. He’s next due in court Sept. 12.

"Being someone who works in law enforcement ... it hurts a lot more to know that it was somebody in law enforcement," Woodard's sister, Tashara Gilyard, told WSB as she held back tears.


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