Thursday, April 12, 2012

Shaima Alawadi- Hate Crime, Honor Killing Or Just Plain Murder?

Shaima Alawadi is the 32-year-old Iraqi immigrant mother of five who was found beaten to a pulp in her home in El Cajon, along with a note that said  ‘Go back to your country, you terrorist.’ She died a few days later, and most everyone immediately jumped to the conclusion that it was a hate crime- that she was targeted because she was a hijab-wearing Muslim. Outraged people even created a Facebook page 'One Million Hijabs For Shaima Alawadi.

Well, it's now looking more like it was an honor killing or just plain murder, with several possible scenarios. Was it the 17-year-old daughter Fatima who was the one who found her bleeding, dying mother and called 911; the daughter who was caught 'possibly' having sex in a car with a 21-year-old male, and was very upset about a pending forced marriage to her cousin? Or was it Shaima's husband,  Kassim Alhimidi, who she was apparently planning to divorce and then getting the heck out of dodge by moving to Texas? 

Then there's the fact the note was a copy, not the original, and a witness who claims they saw

a skinny dark-skinned male running west from the area of Alawadi’s house. He was described as being in his late teens to early 20s, 5 feet 7 inches tall, 150 pounds, wearing a dark blue or black hooded sweatshirt and carrying a brown doughnut-shaped cardboard box.

And Fatima's story doesn't quite add up:

Fatima and her mother were the only ones at their El Cajon home on Skyview Street when the attack occurred about 11 a.m. on March 21.

Alawadi’s husband, Kassim Alhimidi, had reportedly left to take the couple’s other younger children to school, although police state in the March 27 affidavit that his whereabouts had not yet been confirmed.

Fatima told El Cajon police that she heard her mother squeal, and 10 seconds later heard the sound of glass breaking, the affidavit said. She told police she thought her mother had dropped a plate. Ten minutes later, the daughter discovered her mother lying unconscious on the ground, near a computer, and called 911.

She didn't hear her mother's screams? According to the autopsy, the attack was "extremely violent”. Alawadi had four fractures to the skull, and she was hit in the head at least six times.  If I had my head bashed in with a tire iron, or whatever weapon was used, they'd hear me down the street.

Then there's that odd text message:

A search of Fatima’s cellphone records shows that while she was being interviewed by investigators hours after the attack, While she was being interviewed by police hours after the attack, a text was sent on Fatima's cellphone, “The detective will find out tell them (can’t) talk,” the affidavit states.

If it was indeed an honor killing, planting that note was a clever way to hide the fact by diverting attention from honor to hate crime.

Too bad they don't create a Facebook page One Million Hijabs For Honor Killings.

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