ARLINGTON, Texas — A Texas man reported missing by his family last month was forcibly tattooed with his girlfriend’s name before being shot in the neck and tossed into a drainage ditch, authorities said.
The body of Younis Hussain Alhassinyani, 22, of Arlington, was found on Feb. 4 in a culvert near a creek in the city of Euless, according to officials from the Arlington and Euless police departments.
Alhassinyani’s mother reported him missing Feb. 2 after she was unable to reach him through phone calls and texts.
“Mr. Alhassinyani’s personal identifying information was placed in a national computerized database based upon the missing person’s report,” Arlington police officials said.
Two days later, Texas Department of Transportation employees found his body. The Tarrant County medical examiner determined that Alhassinyani had died of a gunshot wound.
The subsequent investigation led to the arrests of four people.
Alhassinyani’s girlfriend, Erika Perez, 28, is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated kidnapping, filing a false police report and failure to report a felony. She is being held in the Tarrant County Jail in lieu of $32,000.
Three men have been charged with capital murder: Benjamin Delgadillo, 21; Pedro Angel Rodriguez, 21; and Justin Jaxs Salinas, 23. Delgadillo and Rodriguez are being held in lieu of $250,000.
Salinas, who is facing charges from a prior aggravated robbery in Arlington, is being held in lieu of $500,000 bond, jail records show.
A fifth suspect was still being sought Wednesday.
Court records obtained by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram indicated that Alhassinyani, who was fighting drug addiction, had traveled to his native Kurdistan to get clean of the drugs. He returned to Texas on Christmas Day 2020.
Alhassinyani met Perez a short time later. Perez, who uses methamphetamine, introduced him to the drug, according to a warrant. Alhassinyani began spending most of his time at Perez’s apartment in Arlington.
Around 1 a.m. on Feb. 2, Alhassinyani called his family to ask for a ride home from Perez’s apartment. A relative was sent to pick him up, but Alhassinyani had not provided an address and he was no longer answering phone calls and texts.
His family never heard from him again, the Star-Telegram reported.
They went to Perez’s apartment repeatedly over the next couple of days, searching for Alhassinyani but not finding him. Perez eventually called Arlington police to report she was being harassed by Alhassinyani’s relatives.
According to court records, detectives investigating Alhassinyani’s disappearance learned that Perez had posted a Facebook Live video the night of Feb. 1, inviting people to an all-night tattoo session at her home.
“There’s tats going on over here guys,” Perez said in the video, according to NBC Dallas-Fort Worth. “Whoever wants to get tatted up, my favorite and best tattoo artist is here, but you have to come with money.”
The only people who showed up were Alhassinyani and his alleged killers.
The NBC affiliate, which also obtained the court records, reported that detectives went to Perez and questioned her about Alhassinyani’s whereabouts. She told the investigators she’d kicked Alhassinyani out of her apartment after a fight.
Detectives were suspicious of her story, particularly after they told a seemingly unaffected Perez they’d found Alhassinyani murdered, according to the news station.
The tattoo artist also filled in some holes for investigators. The man told detectives he’d been giving a tattoo to a man he knew as “Puppet” when Perez and Alhassinyani got into an argument. Puppet was later identified as Delgadillo, NBC Dallas-Fort Worth reported.
Perez had found photos of her credit cards on Alhassinyani’s cellphone, the warrant alleges. She had also reportedly learned he was seeing other women.
A furious Perez ripped Alhassinyani’s shirt and put tape over his mouth, which he later removed.
Detectives found video on Perez’s phone in which a shirtless Alhassinyani could be seen around 5:42 a.m. Feb. 2, lying on a massage table at Perez’s home. The tattoo artist was working on a tattoo on Alhassinyani’s back.
Delgadillo grabbed the tattoo gun from its owner and began defacing Alhassinyani’s tattoo.
“Do it a little softer,” Alhassinyani asked. “That (expletive) hurts.”
Delgadillo “started to run the tattoo gun harder over (Alhassinyani’s) back,” the warrant stated.
“Ouch,” Perez could be heard saying, according to the records. “Loyalty hurts more.”
“Hey, my bad. I’m not a professional tattooer,” Delgadillo said.
The tattoo artist told police he didn’t object to what the others were doing because Delgadillo was armed, NBC Dallas-Fort Worth reported.
When Perez demanded he tattoo her name on Alhassinyani’s neck, the artist hurried to finish it, according to the court documents.
The tattoo artist told police that three additional armed men showed up at the apartment. Delgadillo let them in.
The men indicated that Alhassinyani would be leaving with them.
“Can I just call my mother to take me home?” Alhassinyani said, according to the witness.
“We will take you home,” one of the armed men replied.
When Delgadillo was questioned about Alhassinyani’s disappearance and killing, he initially gave “multiple stories,” the warrant stated. He eventually admitted that he’d been at the apartment the night Alhassinyani was slain.
He said after he scribbled on Alhassinyani’s tattoo, Perez took Alhassinyani’s cellphone and wallet and gave them to one of the other gunmen.
“Whatever you do to him, don’t do it here,” Perez told the men.
Delgadillo told police he and the three other gunmen got into a Dodge Challenger, forcing Alhassinyani into the back seat. They then drove up Highway 360 to Euless, about 12 miles from Perez’s apartment.
When they arrived at their destination, they ordered Alhassinyani out of the car. He refused at first, but the men gave him no choice, Delgadillo told police.
Salinas pulled out a Glock handgun and shot Alhassinyani in the neck, the news station reported.
Delgadillo told detectives they initially left Alhassinyani where he fell. They returned a few minutes later, however, and dragged Alhassinyani’s body closer to the creek, where he was later found.
After dumping Alhassinyani’s body, the men drove more than 120 miles to Wichita Falls, where Rodriguez, the driver of the Challenger, allegedly had a “trap house,” the court records said.
Each of the alleged gunmen accused of killing Alhassinyani has a criminal record. Rodriguez was charged with murder in 2016, when he was 16 years old, in a fatal stabbing in Arlington.
A grand jury later decided against indicting him on the charge.
Salinas, Alhassinyani’s alleged killer, was arrested at age 17 for aggravated robbery. Sentenced to deferred adjudication, he was charged for a second robbery in 2018 and had an active warrant for his arrest when Alhassinyani was slain.
NBC Dallas-Fort Worth reported that Perez had a series of drug and theft arrests dating back to 2012. Delgadillo had a single prior arrest for marijuana possession in December 2018.
Alhassinyani was his mother’s only child, according to a GoFundMe page created by his cousin. His father died two years ago after battling a terminal illness.
“This is truly a devastation to his mother, who’s lost both her only son and her husband in less than two years,” wrote his cousin, Dileen Younis. “Please, let’s come together to help this heartbroken mother raise enough money to help cover funeral costs and burial expenses, and other costs.
“Most importantly, please let’s all keep his mother in your prayers. I cannot fathom what pain she must be going through.”