Phoenix, AZ – An Iraqi mother is back in jail without bond on charges of assault against her 19-year-old daughter for allegedly beating the girl with a shoe while she was tied to a bed. Yusra Farhan was recently asked in court to explain her actions.
“I swear I didn’t hit her – only slightly, like any parent would do to their children,” answered Farhan.
So, you can see that this is going to go well for her. But, let’s back up a bit, shall we…
Last November, police were first contacted about an alleged assault of Farhan’s daughter, 19-year-old Aiya Altameemi, at the hands of Farhan and another daughter. Officer James Holmes with the Phoenix Police Department said that, in that incident, Farhan and the girl’s 18-year-old sister “held this young lady down while mom took a hot spoon and burned her on the face and on the chest.” Holmes said the burning resulted in a scar on the teen’s chest. The reason…
“The family wanted her to participate in a pre-arranged marriage with a 38-year-old male,” said Officer Holmes.
Phoenix police acknowledge that, while they did take a report on that incident four months ago, it was mislabeled. Because of this, the allegations of abuse – supported with help from the victim’s high school – were not properly followed-up.
According to court documents, on February 10, Aiya Altameemi was hospitalized after – by her mother’s own admission – having been hit by Farhan several times ‘with her hand and with a shoe.’ This, after Farhan became angry because the girl had started speaking with a boy. Farhan also admitted to police that the beating was administered while the girl was tied to a bed at their home. Police, not seeing the zen of it all, arrested Farhan. She was then released on bail.
This beating-with-a-shoe thing led to the earlier complaint being found. Detectives then searched the Iraqi family’s home looking for evidence related to the earlier assault.
A local news crew caught up with the daughter at the family’s home about this time and the girl took the opportunity to withdraw her original claims of abuse. When prodded about her treatment, though, Aiya Altameemi tells a news reporter, “Here it’s not allowed but, for me, it’s normal.”
Officer Holmes was not surprised at the reversal. “It’s not unusual that she says that it didn’t happen, but in fact we have physical evidence that shows that it did,” said Holmes.
“We found enough, and we got enough information on follow-up questions to the witnesses to arrest the three of them today,” added Holmes. The ‘three of them’ refer to Aiya Altameemi’s mother, father, and sister.
Yusra Farhan was re-arrested along with father, Mohammed Altameemi, and sister, Tabarek Altameemi – each charged with aggravated assault and unlawful imprisonment. The mother is without bond while the father and sister are on $20,000 and $7,500 respectfully. It doesn’t really matter, though, because both the father and the sister are on immigration hold – meaning that, even if bond is paid, they will not be released. They are also all on no-contact orders barring them from having any contact with Aiya Altameemi.
The family had stated that they wish to return to Iraq because of all the turmoil surrounding the arrests. They even displayed their intentions with “for sale” signs on every vehicle they own. But for now, nobody is going anywhere.
Regardless, police believe Aiya Altameemi is not out of danger and hope to get her into family advocacy programs to help keep her safe. They have doubts that she will participate.
Let’s hope – with the little breathing room that she has been afforded – that she does. …and check out Officer Holmes in the video. That man should have a talk show. Seriously.Tags: aggravated assault, Aiya Altameemi, Arizona, honor beating, Mohammed Altameemi, Tabarek Altameemi, unlawful imprisonment, Yusra Farhan