More evidence seized in search for missing baby - abc27 WHTM

More evidence seized in search for missing baby

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Ummad Rushdi Ummad Rushdi
Hamza Ali (delcotimes.com) Hamza Ali (delcotimes.com)
Rushdi's home in Windsor Township Rushdi's home in Windsor Township
Police search for Hamza Ali in Columbia Police search for Hamza Ali in Columbia
YORK, Pa. (WHTM) -

Police searching for a missing baby boy have seized computers, cell phones, digging tools and other items from the York County home where the child lived with his mother, her boyfriend and others.

According to a search warrant inventory receipt filed by police Tuesday afternoon, investigators seized as evidence two pick axes and a trunk liner from the garage, and a small shovel that was in a guest bedroom at 979 Castle Pond Drive in Windsor Township.

Authorities additionally seized baby clothing from the back porch and a stained towel from the master bathroom, according to the document.

Police have been searching for 7-month-old Hamza Ali since last week. They believe 30-year-old Ummad Rushdi, the boyfriend of the baby's mother, killed the child during the early morning of August 4 at Rushdi's parents' home in Upper Darby, fled the house with the body while the others were asleep, and buried the remains somewhere.

Tuesday's search of the home followed the discovery of evidence that indicated the baby may have been buried near Columbia, but was moved to another location. Investigators said they believe Rushdi may have had second thoughts about how he disposed of the remains and retrieved the body, then reburied the child in a white garment.

According to the search warrant affidavit, a police dog trained in the detection of human remains on Thursday alerted to a wooded area that consisted of a large rock overlooking a patch of branches.

The dog alerted to an off-white pillowcase that was spread out on top of the rock, a tree stump next to the rock, and directly on top of the fallen branches, police said in the affidavit.

The baby's mother, Zaineb Gaal, told investigators that the pillowcase belongs to Rushdi, the document states.

Gaal additionally identified a blanket seized from the home last week as her son's. She told police the blanket had been with the baby while the couple was visiting Rushdi's parents.

The blanket and a white shirt were found in Rushdi's room. The shirt - which had been placed into a plastic bag - had a stain that appeared to be blood and another stain that appeared to be bodily fluid, the affidavit states.

Police planned to continue their search for the baby this week in areas around the Windsor Township home and near the intersection of Route 30 and Route 441 in Columbia, where the car Rushdi drove from Upper Darby was found stuck in the mud August 4.

A child's car seat and a shovel were found in the trunk, according to court documents.

Once the search has been exhausted, police have said they will pursue homicide charges against Rushdi, who is currently jailed in the Delaware County Prison on kidnapping and related charges.

According to court documents filed last week, Rushdi told his brother, Jawaal Rushdi, that he killed the child by shaking him after the baby woke up crying and would not stop.

He told his brother that he attempted CPR when the baby went unconscious, but could not revive him, the warrant states.

Rushdi then took the child from the home and buried him, but did not tell his brother where he put the body, the document states.

Police have said they believe Rushdi hid the baby's body because injuries would show the death was not accidental, but reveal that he been abusing the boy for months.

Other items seized Tuesday include laptop computers, storage devices, cell phones and documents that were in the bedroom of Jawaal Rushdi, who also lived in the Windsor Township home with his family.

According to court documents filed last week, Jawaal was told of the baby's death on August 5, but for two days told Gaal that Ummad was planning to return her son to Upper Darby.

Jawaal Rushdi has not been charged with any crime.


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