French artist killed while making documentary in Detroit, body found outside Brewster projects

DETROIT (WXYZ) - Months after his body was found with a gunshot wound to the head, fingerprints and DNA reveal the murder victim found near the abandoned Brewster projects last summer is Bilal Berreni.

The 23-year-old street artist from France had been traveling the world, often with a friend, but Detroit Police are now trying to find out who Bilal knew here in the city that might be able to help investigators with details about his time here, in hopes of finding his killer.

Mourad Berreni reportedly said that his son combined paintings and videos to tell stories about the failure of capitalism and social chaos.

There was no identification found on Bilal's body when it was discovered by a cleanup crew in late July, 2013.

Michigan State Police Detective Sarah Krebs, who is also a forensic artist, developed a sketch in hopes of identifying the victim who had been shot in the head.

And on February 28, fingerprints and DNA identified the man as Bilal Berreni.

While nothing has been ruled out, Detroit Police believe Bilal, who had visited Detroit before, may have been the victim of a robbery.

"From the information we received from family and the consulate, we believe he was in that particular area doing some documentary work," said Detroit Police Sergeant Michael Woody. "He may have been carrying some expensive equipment which would have been very appealing to some of the criminal element."
 
Police are now hoping to talk to local artists or anyone who can tell them when Bilal might have arrived in Detroit, where he was living, or anything about who may have killed him.
 
Anyone with information is urged to call (313) 596-2260.

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