Victim’s father believes Halifax County double-murder suspect ‘definitely deserves’ life in prison

‘Other people in my family think that it’s not fair that he’s breathing and Ayanna’s not.’

HALIFAX COUNTY, Va. – The 18-year-old man charged in a double-murder investigation in Halifax County appeared in court on Tuesday.

That suspect, Mohamed Aly, appeared via video feed for Tuesday’s proceeding in Halifax General District Court.


Aly is charged with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony in connection with the deaths of Ntombo Joel Bianda, 21, of Alexandria, Virginia, and Ayanna Griffin, 18, of Germantown, Maryland.

[‘A parent’s true nightmare’: Parents ‘lost’ after child killed in Halifax County double murder]

He told the judge that he plans to hire an attorney and his attorney review date is scheduled for March 3, at 9 a.m.

If he hires an attorney before then, the attorney will notify the court. If not, then Aly will have to let the judge know why he has yet to hire one.

“I hope my son is not guilty,” said Hakim Aly.

[State police say people found dead at scene of Halifax County car crash were murdered]

He told 10 News off-camera that the family is still in shock and that he doesn’t believe his son would have murdered anyone.

He is worried that Mohamed is protecting his family and was maybe threatened by someone who was responsible for Joel and Ayanna’s deaths.

Hakim added that he feels bad for Ayanna and Joel’s families.

Mohamed’s teachers and classmates all liked him according to Hakim and he didn’t think his son would do anything like this.

Hakim said they don’t know the truth and they still have have many questions.

10 News also spoke with Ivan Maertens Aramayo, the father of Ayanna Griffin.

“I’m here because I really wanted to represent Ayanna in spirit. Just let the court and all the officials know that I’m going to be here every single time because this is a matter that is obviously super personal for me,” said Aramayo.

He was clear about what he wants for Aly’s future, "My primary thing is I want to make sure that he knows what the inside of jail looks like until the day he dies.”

“Oh, I hope this guy, you know, gets locked up for the rest of his life. He definitely deserves that,” said Aramayo. “Other people in my family think that it’s not fair that he’s breathing and Ayanna’s not.”

About the Authors: