The Arizona honor killing trial has been moving along. Iraqi immigrant Faleh Almaleki is accused of killing his 20-year-old daughter Noor for becoming too westernized by mowing her down with his Jeep Cherokee.
Note to immigrants from Islamic and other misogynous cultures: don’t think your daughters will remain enslaved when they see women living as free individuals around them. If keeping the chains on the females is important, then stay home and keep your Islamic diversity to yourselves.
Fox presented an overall update, noting that “honor killing” is not a defense in the United States. The accused says the death was an accident, but the case against him is strong.
Another woman was injured in Almaleki’s murderous rampage, Amal Khalaf, who survived and testified on Thursday. She is the mother of Noor’s boyfriend, and both families have known each other for years, so there is an element of families in conflict as well. Khalaf was shown on video with her face blurred because she fears retaliation in Iraq.
Surviving victim in alleged ‘honor killing’ testifies, Arizona Republic, Feb. 3, 2011
Amal Khalaf was walking across a Peoria parking lot when she saw a Jeep headed straight toward her.
Faleh Hassan Al-Maleki was in the driver’s seat, Khalaf told a Maricopa County Superior Court jury Thursday.
Khalaf raised her hands and screamed, urging the Glendale man to stop. She was thrown into the air when his SUV slammed into her.
Then, Khalaf said, Al-Maleki turned his Jeep toward his daughter, Noor, who had been living with her family for months.
Defense attorneys have said Al-Maleki was trying to spit on Khalaf. He swerved, the attorneys said, but could not avoid the two women.
Noor died about two weeks later. Khalaf, who had a broken hip and thigh, spent about two months in the hospital.
In interviews after his 2009 arrest, Peoria police asked Al-Maleki, 50, if the hit and run was an attempted honor killing, in which a woman is slain for not adhering to traditional cultural values, bringing shame to her family.
Al-Maleki repeatedly said it was an accident, but nodded when a detective asked if he intended to hit his daughter, according to police reports.
Al-Maleki has been charged with first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault and two counts of leaving the scene of a serious-injury accident.
If the jury decides Al-Maleki plotted his daughter’s death, he will be found guilty of first-degree murder and face life in prison. If the jury believes the defense, he could be found guilty of a lesser offense, such as second-degree murder or manslaughter.
On Thursday, more than a year after the incident, Khalaf testified during Al-Maleki’s trial. She recalled a past friendship with the Al-Maleki family, a relationship that had soured.
The two families of Iraqi refugees met in the late 1990s in Detroit. After Khalaf and her family moved on to the Phoenix area, Faleh Al-Maleki called about job prospects, Khalaf said.
The Al-Malekis eventually moved to the Valley and lived with Khalaf’s family for more than two months before settling into their own home.
Then, for a reason Khalaf didn’t describe during her testimony, the families grew distant.
Noor, who was 20 when she died, married a cousin from Iraq, a union she later abandoned to return to the Phoenix area. She began to stay with Khalaf’s family on and off, sometimes for 10 days at a time, Khalaf said.
Each time, Khalaf said, she urged Noor to return her parents.
But a July 2009 encounter with the Al-Malekis startled her.
Khalaf said Faleh Al-Maleki and his wife came to her home to retrieve their daughter, who had been dating Khalaf’s son Marwan. Khalaf didn’t answer when the couple knocked on the front door. Police responded, but the family didn’t want charges filed.
Khalaf said she was shaken again when she and Noor saw Faleh Al-Maleki walk into the state Department of Economic Services building in Peoria on Oct. 20, 2009. Noor had come to translate for Khalaf, whose first language is Arabic. The women didn’t interact with Faleh Al-Maleki inside.
Concerned Al-Maleki might threaten his daughter, Khalaf said, she drove around the parking lot, looking for Al-Maleki and hoping to speak to him. She accidentally locked her keys in her car after she failed to find him.
“I was so nervous,” she said, speaking through a translator on Thursday.
Noor suggested the two women get some water while they waited for one of Khalaf’s sons to bring another set of keys. They started walking to a restaurant next door.
Then, Khalaf said, Al-Maleki’s Jeep appeared in front of her. The Glendale man was silent.
“He was driving so fast,” Khalaf said. “I stood in front of him, but he did not stop.”
The trial will continue Monday.