• Maher Kassem, a 63-year-old suburban Chicago man, has been charged with four counts of first-degree murder for allegedly killing his wife and three adult daughters.
  • The victims of the shooting were identified as Majeda Kassem, twins Halema and Zahia Kassem, and Hanan Kassem.
  • Chicago Mayor Michael Glotz expressed deep sadness over the tragedy, describing it as a senseless act of domestic violence.

Murder charges were filed Tuesday against a suburban Chicago man accused of killing his wife and three adult daughters in what police have described as a domestic-related shooting.

Maher Kassem, 63, was charged with four counts of first-degree murder, according to authorities. Police allege he shot four family members after an argument at their home Sunday morning in Tinley Park, which is about 30 miles from Chicago.

Killed in the shooting were Majeda Kassem, 53; twins Halema and Zahia Kassem, both 25; and Hanan Kassem, 24.


“Words can’t describe how deeply saddened I am at this horrible tragedy,” Mayor Michael Glotz said in a statement Tuesday. “A mother and her three daughters are gone, murdered in an act of senseless domestic violence.”

Funeral services were scheduled for Tuesday at a mosque while friends held an online memorial fundraiser to build a mosque in honor of the women. The family is of Palestinian descent and Muslim.

A day earlier, mourners arranged flowers upright in the snow outside the home and left small stuffed animals. Friends and neighbors noted Majeda Kassem’s passion for cooking and how all three daughters were intelligent devoted students.

Samah Qasmieh, a Chicago State University professor, taught Halema, who was a third year student.

“I just envision her in her bedroom studying for the exam they have Tuesday, doing nothing wrong at all,” Qasmieh told The Chicago Sun-Times as she stopped by the home Monday to pay respects.


Maher Kassem was expected in bond court Tuesday. A listed phone number for him couldn’t take messages. Cook County court officials didn’t immediately respond to a message about whether Kassem had an attorney. The Cook County public defenders’ office couldn’t immediately say if they were representing him. The Cook County state’s attorney did not have details on an attorney.

Authorities allege Maher Kassem called police and said someone had been shot at the home. Officers arriving at the home found the four deceased women in the home’s lower level. Police took Kassem, who was not injured, into custody shortly after and recovered a gun believed to have been used in the shooting.

Tinley Park police called it the deadliest shooting in the village of about 55,000 people since 2008 when five women were killed at a Lane Bryant clothing store at a strip mall in the suburb. The murders remained unsolved.

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