A Grand Forks man has been charged with murder after a fatal shooting over the weekend.

Police identified the victim on Monday, Sept. 13, as 28-year-old Megan Lea Gustafson of Grand Forks. Ahmed Abdullahi, 26, was initially charged with manslaughter for her death, but a Sept. 13 release from the Grand Forks Police Department stated the charge had been upgraded to murder.

Abdullahi will make his initial court appearance Monday afternoon. If convicted of murder, he faces up to life in prison without parole. He has also been charged with unlawful possession of a firearm and theft, both of which carry maximum penalties of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Abdullahi pleaded guilty to misdemeanor terrorizing in July, and was not allowed to possess firearms as part of the terms of his probation.

Gustafson's death remains under active investigation, according to GFPD.

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A release states that Grand Forks police officers responded to a 911 call reporting a suspicious person at a residence on the 1300 block of Eighth Avenue North just after 1:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 12.

Police investigating a shooting death inside a north Grand Forks home.
Police investigating a shooting death inside a north Grand Forks home. Sydney Mook/Grand Forks Herald

According to court documents, when officers arrived at the scene, they knocked on the door to the residence, and Gustafson opened the door. After speaking with her, officers walked away. Documents state that shortly after, they could hear an argument coming from inside the residence.

Police observed the front door to the apartment open, documents state, and Gustafson could be seen standing with her back to the street, and a man, later identified as Abdullahi, standing inside the apartment facing her.

Officers then reported hearing a single gunshot, and then hearing Gustafson scream, documents state. Gustafson ran into the lawn and collapsed. Officers began lifesaving measures and paramedics were contacted to transport her to Altru Hospital, but she ultimately was pronounced dead of a gunshot wound to her neck and chin area.

After Gustafson collapsed outside, Abdullahi exited the apartment on his own, according to police. Documents state he was holding a 9 mm Taurus handgun that had been reported stolen from a Grand Forks vehicle in September 2020.

Police have not clarified the relationship between Abdullahi and Gustafson, but the two were believed to have been known to each other, according to the release.

Gustafson's death is being investigated by The North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation along with the Grand Forks Police Department.