Don't talk to cops, said text to daughter of slain Iraqi woman
On the day that her mother was brutally attacked, Fatima Alhimidi got a text message telling her not to talk to police, according to a search warrant unsealed Thursday.
The daughter of slain Iraqi immigrant Shaima Alawadi received the message on her cellphone: "The detective will find out tell them cnt talk." The affidavit does not indicate who sent the message to Fatima.
New information paints a picture of a family in turmoil.
Shaima Alawadi was fatally beaten in her El Cajon home. The documents reveal trouble in her marriage and with her 17-year-old daughter.
Divorce documents with Alawadi's name were found in her car by police.
Also, Fatima Alhimidi was angry at her parents for their attempt to force her into a marriage with a cousin, an arranged marriage common in the parents' native land. She apparently had a boyfriend of her own choosing.
Fatima Alhimidi discovered her mother's bloody body in the dining room of the family home March 21. She also reported finding a note beside the body that warned her mother to go back to Iraq and called her a terrorist.
“She was innocent," Fatima said in an emotional plea to a television reporter. "She was a mother of five. You took my mother, you took my best friend away from me. Why? Why?”
In November, Fatima Alhimidi was spotted by police possibly having sex in a car with a 21-year-old man, according to the affidavit. Her mother drove to the location to take her daughter home.
During the trip, Fatima Alhimidi jumped out of her mother's car at 35 mph and had to be taken to the hospital with a possible broken arm. As she jumped, she told her mother, "I love you, Mom." At the hospital, the teen refused to talk to police.
Alawadi's husband, Kissim Alhimidi, told police that he had taken the couple's younger children to school when his wife was killed.
The search warrant and accompanying affidavit provide several facts not previously disclosed about the killing, including that Alawadi was struck on the head at least six times, possibly with a tire iron, and the attack was "extremely violent."
Also, the morning of the attack, a neighbor reported seeing "a dark-skinned male, in late teens or early 20s," running from the area of the victim's house, carrying a small cardboard box, according to the affidavit.
Alawadi was planning to divorce her husband and move to Texas to be with other family members, a family friend told police, according to the affidavit.
El Cajon police declined to discuss the contents of the search warrant and affidavit documents, which were initially released by court personnel by mistake. Other documents in the case have been sealed.
Chief Jim Redman has said that while his detectives have not ruled out the possibility of a hate crime, they are exploring "other evidence," which he declined to discuss.
Alawadi, 32, was buried in the Iraqi holy city of Najaf, with her husband and daughter in attendance.
-- Tony Perry in San Diego
Photo: Fatima Alhimidi. Credit: KUSI-TV