BURIEN, Wash. - A man who was tragically killed in a hit-and-run crash in Burien earlier this week was laid to rest on Thursday.
Friends and family are mourning the loss of Omar Jamaludin, but what makes this case more painful is how long it took police to respond to the scene, and how his family likely won’t be able to make burial ceremony.
On Monday at around 5:00 p.m., Omar went out for a walk near his home on Des Moines Memorial Dr. S. His roommate, Jasmine, told FOX 13 she knew he would return, because he takes a walk around the same time every day. Additionally, he left a pot on the stove on.
When he did not return that night, she and friends of Omar started calling police to report him missing. This was difficult for them, because the Burien Police Department Office was closed, and 911 dispatch was not being helpful.
Initially, Omar’s friends were frustrated that police did not connect the dots, because police thought a hit-and-run was reported just blocks away from where the missing person’s report was happening. However, it was not a hit-and-run report.
A neighbor who saw the crash told FOX 13 what the sheriff confirmed: he only saw a truck hit a fence and speed away. The neighbor never saw anyone hit.
Omar’s friends were under the assumption that police were running an active scene, but they were instead investigating the scene as a property damage incident. They had overlooked Omar’s body laying in the backyard of the home where the fence was destroyed.
Omar’s body was not discovered until the homeowners let their dog outside at around 1:00 p.m. the next day.
The man who let the dog outside told FOX 13 that the fire department came and left – leaving the body unattended for hours until the coroner arrived at around 6:00 p.m. According to the sheriff, their officers were on scene for much longer – closing the road for a proper investigation.
Omar will be laid to rest in Redmond in accordance with Muslim burial practices, which require a very timely ceremony. Omar is Malaysian, and unfortunately, it sounds like his family will not be able to make it.