A man dubbed the “John Doe Duffel Bag” murderer for the oversized black bag he carried while killing three shopkeepers in Brooklyn went on trial last week.
The trial began Wednesday when jurors were shown a surveillance camera video of Salvatore Perrone peering into the store owned by a man he is accused of killing minutes later. He is seen carrying the large black duffel bag that prosecutors have called his “kill kit,” according to the New York Post.
The bag, which held a sawed-off rifle and a bloody knife, was later found by police stuffed behind a couch in a friend’s home.
Clothing shop manager Rafael Picshardo testified how he nearly became one of Perrone’s victims. He recalled the suspect coming into his store on Nov. 16, 2012, but “skedaddled” after noticing cameras. Later that night, another shopowner, Ramatollah Vahidipour, was killed down the block.
Vahidipour’s daughter briefly told jurors how she went searching for her father that cold night in the train station. Tears streaming down her face, Marjan Vahidipour said it was rare for her father to be home late.
Two of the three victims were Jews of Middle Eastern descent; the third was a Muslim but Perrone told police he thought he was Jewish. They are Mohamed Gebeli, 65, from Egypt, Isaac Kadare, Hy”d, 59, a Jewish émigré from Egypt, and Rahmatollah Vahidipour, Hy”d, 78, an Iranian Jew.
Perrone was a frequent visitor on Boro Park’s 13th Ave., toting his infamous bag while purchasing items and paying with bad checks.
Perrone, who said he was a member of the “Palestinian section of the CIA,” is an eccentric who investigators suggested had a pattern when choosing his victims. The shops owned by the victims form a triangle about four miles apart, with addresses that contain the number eight.
Doctors diagnosed Perrone with a personality disorder but a judge ruled him fit for trial. Neighbors said they referred to him as “Son of Sal,” due to his sometimes violent nature.