Re: Memorial for Muslim Woman Beaten to Death in Possible Hate-Crime
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Memorial service for Shaima al-Awadi is being held at the Islamic Center of Lakeside. Friends, family and community members have gathered to pay respects to the 32-year-old mother of five.
Al-Awadi was found unconscious in the dining room of her home in the San Diego suburb of El Cajon. She died of her wounds several days later..
The murder has left the Muslim community in a state of shock. El Cajon is home to an estimated 60-thousand Middle Eastern immigrants, many who have come to America to seek a better life.
The service included the participation of leaders in the Muslim and Christian communities. Al-Awadi's husband Kassim al-Himidi addressed the crowd in Arabic as his son Mohammed translated.
No local police were present, but representatives of the Iraqi government did attend and speak at the service. Speakers urged the community to remain patient as authorities continue their investigation in al-Awaidi's killing.
The FBI is assisting the El Cajon police in the investigation. The Bureau is providing agents specifically trained to conduct hate crime investigations. Authorities continue to call the killing an isolated incident but have yet to comment on suspects or evidence.
Muslim leaders remind the community to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity to law enforcement.