2nd Minnesota man reportedly killed fighting for ISIS in Syria - KMSP-TV

2nd Minnesota man reportedly killed fighting for ISIS in Syria

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Sources tell Fox 9 News a second Minnesota family has received word that a man who left the Twin Cities has died fighting with the terror group ISIS in Syria.

At about 9 p.m. on Wednesday, leaders in the Somali-American community heard that State Department officials notified a Minneapolis family that a second American was found among the dead militants. According to Fox 9 sources, Abdirahmaan Muhumed -- who was the focus of an MPR story just two months ago -- died in the same battle as Douglas McCain, a former Robbinsdale-Cooper High School student.

MORE: 'My cousin isn't a terrorist'

The many faces of Douglas McCain were captured in at least nine mug shots taken in Minnesota for minor offenses, but many still struggle to believe the quiet student could have become a fighter overseas. Shelly Case remembers him as a friendly neighbor who played basketball with her young son and kept him out of trouble.

"Shocked, shocked because that was nothing like him," Case said. "He was always respectful. He was always looking out for other kids here. He was a good kid."

Case knew McCain when he and his family lived in an apartment building in New Hope, Minn. -- but federal investigators say he became increasingly radicalized with age. In fact, they say he showed his support for ISIS on Facebook and Twitter before traveling overseas to join the fight -- and sources now say he's not the only Minnesota man who took a one-way trip.

"Americans are being recruited in a litany of ways," FBI investigator Kyle Loven told Fox 9 News. "Social media is a big way."

A handful of Minnesotans are believed to be among the 100 or so Americans who have left the country to take up arms alongside militant extremists in Syria. Most of them are disaffected young men targeted by recruitment videos like the one put out by al-Shabaab, praising Minnesota's "martyrs." Troy Kastigar is among the Minnesota men who died fighting for that terror group in Somalia two years ago, but before that, he and McCain were schoolyard friends.

"Minnesotans should be concerned about that because we don't want our young people to be misled, think one thing, find out it's a different thing, and basically succumb to propaganda," Loven said.

According to Abdi Bihi, a leader in the local Somali community, ISIS has recently begun trying to recruit young women from the Twin Cities to their cause as well.

"They are brainwashing them to marry them off to jihadists," he said. "They call them to help out as nurses, help out the wounded -- but the real catch is they will be sexually exploited."

While the jihadists may see fighting as a path to paradise, Bihi said the only thing young people who take that path will face is disappointment, possibly even death.

"What will not change is the pain and agony and suffering of the parents," he lamented.

Without the resources to create jobs, Bihi believes that disenchanted youths will continue to be vulnerable to Islamic extremists. That's why he's created a fund, and donations can be made here: http://www.gofundme.com/gofundthework

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