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Photo: GoFundMe
Close to $1 million has been raised for Mohammad Anwar since his death over the weekend. Photo: GoFundMe

GoFundMe in honor of Pakistani immigrant killed in botched carjacking raises close to $1 million

Mohammad Anwar was killed in D.C. after two teenagers, aged 13 and 15, sped off in his car with him still clinging to the driver’s side door.

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A GoFundMe campaign organized to help the family of a Pakistani immigrant killed in a carjacking in Washington D.C last week has now accumulated over $900,000 in donations.  

66-year-old Mohammad Anwar was having a normal day on the afternoon of Tuesday, March 23, working as an UberEats delivery driver, not knowing that his life would end in a matter of minutes.

While getting ready to go out for a delivery on the 1200 block of Van Street SE, two teenage girls, ages 13 and 15, approached Anwar’s vehicle and assaulted him with a stun gun. 

The suspects then stole his grey sedan and crashed it moments later. A video taken by a bystander was posted to Twitter, showing Anwar desperately grasping onto the driver’s side door yelling: “they’re thieves, this is my car.” 

He was still clinging on to the side of his sedan when the suspects frantically sped off, causing the car to flip, ending up just outside the ballpark of the Washington Nationals. 

The video, posted on Saturday, shows the entire encounter unfolding in just a minute and a half, resulting in Anwar’s Honda Accord on its side. The girls walked out of the car without a single scratch, while Anwar lay sprawled out on the sidewalk, critically injured and motionless. 

By Sunday afternoon, the video had been seen at least 5.5 million times on Twitter.

Emergency personnel arrived at 4:30 pm and transported Anwar to a local hospital, but after exhausting all “lifesaving efforts,” he was pronounced dead. 

Police have not yet identified the juvenile suspects, one of whom is from D.C., and the other is from Fort Washington, Maryland. 

The two suspects were detained on the scene, arrested on felony murder and carjacking charges, and appeared in juvenile court on March 24. Their attorneys entered pleas of “not involved” and requested their release. 

D.C. resident and bystander Pamela Johnson told NBC4 Washington that she couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw what had occurred.

“I saw all the police cars first. Then I saw the car, and I thought, ‘This must be a movie scene or something,’” she said. 

“I think that people do need to be brought to justice and that they have to stand for what they did and be accountable for their actions, because someone died,” Johnson said. 

Lehra Bogino, Anwar’s niece by marriage, set up the GoFundMe campaign to raise money so her uncle could have a proper Islamic burial, and to compensate for the loss of wages for the family. 

“Mohammad Anwar was a hard-working Pakistani immigrant who came to the United States to create a better life for him and his family,” Bogino wrote. 

Bogino also wrote that Anwar was the financial provider for his family, and they would like to raise funds to assist his family with the loss of income. 

Anwar, who lived in the suburbs of Springfield, Virginia, was described by Bogino as “a hard-working Pakistani immigrant who came to the U.S to create a better life for him and his family.”

Bogino wrote more in a Facebook post.

“Many of you have seen the story about a tragic carjacking in Navy Yard from yesterday. The man who died was my husband’s uncle. We are all so confused, angry and heartbroken by this ridiculous and nonsensical act of violence. All he did was go to work to support his family,” she wrote.

Uber extended their condolences to the family in a statement to the popular Asian-American media outlet, NextShark.

“We are devastated by this tragic news and our hearts go out to Mohammad’s family during this difficult time,” the company said. “We’re grateful the suspects have been arrested and thank the Metropolitan Police Department for their diligence with this investigation.” 

Anwar’s family has requested that the video of Anwar’s death cease to be shared, and asked people on social media to report the video if they do come across it. 

“I am humbly asking everyone we know to not watch and to especially not share with any of our family members,” said Muhammad Akbar on Facebook. 

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