Australia: Israeli-Arab student brutally raped and murdered while on FaceTime with her sister
Aya Masarwe, a 21-year-old Israeli-Arab student was murdered in Melbourne while she was speaking on FaceTime with her sister.
Aya was brutally attacked in North Melbourne after a night out with friends late Tuesday night, and her partially-naked body was found in bushes the following morning.
The 21-year-old student, who was reportedly five months into a year-long exchange programme at Melbourne’s LaTrobe University, was riding a tram home from a comedy club to Bundoora before she was met by her attacker around midnight.
She got off a tram outside a shopping center and called her sister, who was overseas, to catch up, but as they were talking she was attacked.
Aya is believed to have dropped the phone as the horrendous crime was committed, and her sister then “heard voices” and alerted police.
‘(Her sister) heard the sound of the phone falling to the ground and heard some voices,’ Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper told reporters in Melbourne on Thursday.
‘This was a horrendous, horrific attack inflicted on a completely innocent young woman who was a visitor to our city,’ he said. Stamper also said police believed it to be a ‘random attack’.
Officers retrieved a black baseball cap and a grey t-shirt they believe were worn by the perpetrator from the crime scene, which they described as ‘very distressing’.
Chilling footage released by homicide detectives shows Aiia on the phone in the final moments before the attack.
Police released the CCTV images, which show the clothing she was wearing that night, in the hope someone saw her and can help police track her exact movements.
Investigators have also released images of a t-shirt and a cap that were located at the scene.
Forensic testing is being conducted on the clothing and police believe it is likely to have been left there by Aya’s killer.
The murder has chilling similarities to the brutal killings of Eurydice Dixon and Jill Meagher, who were both raped and murdered while walking home in Melbourne suburbs.
Dixon was raped and killed on her way home from a comedy show in June last year. Her body was found on a soccer field in Princes Park in Carlton North.