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Man Gets 40 Years For Murder Of Friend's Parents In 2011

CHICAGO (CBS) -- A man has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for his role in the murder of his friend's parents in southwest suburban Palos Heights in 2011.

Ehab Qasem, 25, pleaded guilty to one count of murder on March 8 before Judge Neil J. Linehan at the Bridgeview courthouse, according to the Cook County court records.

Qasem, of Hickory Hills -- along with John Granat Jr. of Palos Heights, Christopher Wyma of Bridgeview, and Mohammaed Salahat of Chicago Ridge -- was charged with the murders of Granat's parents, John Granat Sr. and Maria Granat, authorities said at the time. Granat, Salahat and Wyma were 17 at the time; Qasem was 19.

Police found the couple dead in the bedroom of their home in the 12700 block of South 81st Court in unincorporated Palos Heights on Sept. 11, 2011, after their son called 911.

Granat Jr. was charged days after the murders when his alibi fell apart, authorities said at the time. His friends continued attending Stagg High School in Palos Hills, and Oak Lawn Community High School for about another month before they were arrested and charged.

John Granat Jr., Christopher Wyma, Mohammad Salahat, and Ehab Qasem
(Clockwise from top left) John Granat Jr., 17; Christopher Wyma, 17; Mohammad Salahat, 17; and Ehab Qasem, 19, are charged with the murder of Granat's parents on Sept. 11, 2011, in their Palos Township home. (Credit: Cook County Sheriff's Office)

Granat and his friends split thousands of dollars they found in the home after the murders, prosecutors said.

Judge Linehan sentenced Qasem to 40 years in prison Wednesday, according to court records. He will receive credit for 1,613 days served in the Cook County Jail, and began serving his sentence Wednesday at the Stateville Correctional Center.

Salahat also pleaded guilty to one count of murder last year and was sentenced to 35 years in prison, the Sun-Times previously reported. He is currently serving his sentence at the Lawrence Correctional Center.

Granat and Wyma are being held at the Cook County Jail as they await trial, according to court records. Granat is next scheduled to appear at the Bridgeview courthouse on March 23, and Wyma is next up Friday.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2017. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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