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Did Hachalu Hundessa’s Alleged Friend Fire The Killer Bullet?

If you think you would find out who fired the bullet that killed Hachalu Hundessa, we have a bridge to sell you. The popular singer and activist, beloved among the Oromo People became the latest victim of assassination spree. Assassinations have become the norms under Abiy Ahmed, the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize Winner. 

Since Abiy’s government will never show you what transpired, you most likely have your own conspiracy theories. We are here to help you to make at least one of your conspiracy theories plausible.

You might have heard Hachalu was with a “friend” the night of his assassination. And you may have also heard she was the one who called Hachalu’s friends to let them know he was shot. Her name is Lamirot Kemal. Although there are many rumors about her and her allegiances, we do not know much about her, so we don’t plan to go there. Let the rumors stand.

Let’s make one thing clear. Based on the available information, Hachalu Hundessa was likely shot by a person sitting in the passenger seat of his car. A person who is most likely right-handed. We say “likely” because we don’t pretend to know what exactly happened. Only the shooter, or shooters would know that. Yet, at least one of the current conspiracy theories could be reinforced based on social media posts and photos. You might have also heard there were no damages to Hachalu’s car, which we assume means no projectile hit his car. We also assume you know the fact that the deceased was found in a driver seat with Ms. Lamirot Kemal in the passenger seat. Based on all these public information, Hachalu was shot inside his car.

Without further ado, let’s introduce you to our amateur forensic analysis. Forensic analyses need expertise and exhaustive documentation, and preservation of evidences. We neither claim to be forensic pathologists nor ballistic experts. We are not criminal profilers either. But we will use basic projectile physics and basic pathology to explain what might have happened.

The reports, albeit from social media, say Hachalu had two gunshot wounds. One on the right side of his upper abdomen and the other on his left shoulder blade area. The assumption is, one is entrance wound and the other exit wound. By transitivity, this also assumes Hachalu was shot once. We haven’t heard reports to the contrary, so that assumption stands.

We have received one photo of Hachalu’s body, which is also circulating on social media besides a photo of the driver seat soaked in blood. The photo of the body shows gunshot wound on his right upper abdomen. The wound is an entrance wound. It doesn’t matter whether the bullet is lodged somewhere in the body or exited his left upper back; this is an entrance wound. We have not received a photo of the wound on the back. We cannot comment on that.

Hachalu's body
Hachalu’s body showing abdominal wound (Source: Facebook)
Blood soaked driver seat
Photo of the driver seat where Hachalu Hundessa bled to death (Source: Facebook)

There are peculiar differences between entrance and exit wounds. The former is smaller, symmetrical and clean compared to the latter. Exit wounds are bigger and have irregular edges–with tissues bluging. Bullets don’t travel in a straight line in a body as they face resistance from tissues and organs, while attempting to maintain momentum. But bullets fired from a closer distance will follow more of a straighter line than the one fired from a farther distance.

Hachalu’s abdominal wound is an entrance wound because of its small size and minimal bleeding. Had the abdominal wound been an exit wound, you would see a protruding tissue with more bleeding.

When we come to the bodies’ orientation, only one explanation is plausible. Hachalu and the assassin were sitting side-by-side. If they were in any other orientation, the assassin has to be one of the little people wherein Hachalu was the giant. That’s an unlikely scenario. Based on the above information, it is safe to put the assassin in the passenger seat and sneaking a handgun from her purse. And fired the fatal bullet, which left two daughters with no father and a wife with no husband on that fateful night of June 29, 2020.

Rough sketch showing where Hachalu's body was located based on accounts from sources
Rough sketch showing where Hachalu’s body was located based on accounts from sources
Direction of projectile based on the entrance wound on the abdomen and possible exit wound in the back
Direction of bullet travel based on the circumstances described and an entrance wound on the abdomen
Direction of bullet travel based on the circumstances described and an entrance wound on the abdomen

If anyone else was in that seat, we will change our mind. Until then, this conspiracy theory is the strong one.

Here are the things you would never get to make up your own mind:

Whether Ms. Kemal’s hands were swabbed for gunshot residues. If not, why not?

Autopsy results explaining how many times Hachalu was shot, the locations of entrance and exit wounds.

Results of any ballistic tests if any.

Whether the murder weapons were found.

If any fingerprints were found on the murder weapons.

We will be waiting for a long time if we are waiting for those things.

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