Officials, Citizens Puzzled by Murder of Muslim Mother Near San Diego


Officials and residents in El Cajon, Calif., have more questions than answers after an Iraqi-born mother of five was fatally beaten last week, a threatening note said to be found at the scene, reports the Christian Science Monitor. Shaima al-Awadi, a 20-year resident of the San Diego area, had moved with her husband and children into a rental home in El Cajon two months ago. She was found beaten and unconscious by a daughter on their dining room floor. A note nearby said, “This is my country. Go back to yours, terrorist,” according to the daughter, Fatima al-Himidi.

A similar note, Fatima says, had been found on the front door earlier this month. Fatima says her mother had dismissed it, considering it a prank. El Cajon has one of the largest Iraqi immigrant communities in the United States. Federal authorities were participating in the investigation. The family is sending Awadi's body back to Iraq for burial. Her father is a well-known cleric there.

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