Posted in: Honor Killings
Published on Feb 07, 2011 by Phyllis Chesler
Jury Finds Honor Killer Muzzammil Hassan Guilty
The verdict is in. The jury found Muzzammil Hassan guilty of second-degree murder. Sentencing will take place on March 9; the minimum sentence for second-degree murder in New York State is 15 years and the maximum is 25 years to life. The District Attorney has said that he will push for the maximum sentence.
This man has now orphaned two children, those whom he had with Aasiya, and traumatized the two children whose mother was one of Muzzammil's previous victims.
Meanwhile, Faleh Almaleki has admitted that he intended to honor-murder his "too-American" daughter.
This is a victory for the American jury system, which in this case valued the life of a woman more than she would have been valued in her native Pakistan.
I congratulate the jury on its just and swift (50 minutes) decision. And I congratulate the prosecution on a job well done. But, in my opinion, Aasiya Zubair Hassan's killer should have been charged with first-degree murder. New York State has abolished capital punishment and reserves first-degree murder charges for murders involving special circumstances, such as torture, multiple murders, or the killing of a police officer. In my opinion, 40 stab wounds and a beheading does rise to the definition of torture. But whatever the charge would have been, it could not bring back the dead.
Now, one can only hope that various communities of goodwill will reach out to embrace the traumatized children and hold them close.
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