Somehow we missed the recent developments in a “shocking hate crime” from earlier this year. Probably because all the initial outrage of this heinous crime was spectacularly wrong and all those who rushed to conclusions are now mysteriously silent.
The husband of an Iraqi immigrant who was killed in March at the family’s El Cajon home pleaded not guilty Tuesday to one count of murder.
Kassim Alhimidi, 48, was arrested Thursday and charged in the killing of his wife, Shaima Alawadi, in the house they rented on Skyview Street. At a hearing in El Cajon Superior Court, Judge Herbert Exarhos ordered the father of five be held without bail.
Prosecutor Kurt Mechals initially wanted $5 million bail but asked Exarhos to require that Alhimidi surrender his passport if he ever posted bail. Exarhos then noted that state law allows setting no bail if there is a risk the person could flee, and then ordered Alhimidi held.
Numerous members of the Iraqi immigrant community showed up at the hearing, but only one spoke to reporters. Qusim Alasady, a neighbor, said that he attended to show support for both families.
He described Alhimidi as a “cool guy” and good neighbor. He did not know of any problems between the couple.
Outside of court, Mechals declined to provide more details on the motive behind the killing, saying more details would be revealed at a preliminary hearing later.
The brutal killing — Alawadi was struck a half-dozen times on the head and had four skull fractures — was first portrayed as a possible hate crime by members of the family.
El Cajon police said last week that the investigation and the arrest of the husband showed the crime was rooted in domestic violence — not hate against Iraqis or Muslims.
We had to go to the other side of the planet to discover this news. Tim Blair helpfully points out one of the shrieking accusers might want to walk back his initial accusations.
UPDATE. Charles Johnson, March 25:
I have no doubt that the climate of deranged xenophobia and anti-Muslim hatred built and fed by people like Newt Gingrich, Pamela Geller, and Robert Spencer played a large part in this brutal crime.
Charles might want to correct that.
Does that lunatic still have a blog? Meanwhile, back when the crime occurred we say hyperventilating articles like this.