To listen to Mutlu Kaya’s voice now is haunting.
To see now how her loving mother would break down in pride as the 19-year-old sang makes the woman’s pain unimaginable.
And to learn now that a controlling ex-boyfriend who wanted to stifle her talent stands accused of shooting her in the head? Absolutely infuriating.
The former boyfriend, identified only as 26-year-old Veysel E., stood charged Thursday in Turkey with attempted murder.
Kaya wowed the nation when, earlier this month, she appeared on “Sesi Çok Güze” -- translated as “ Sounds Beautiful” -- Turkey’s version of “America’s Got Talent.”
She was rehearsing at home when she was shot.
Before he was officially charged he reportedly told local media: “I was against her participation in the competition, but it was not me who shot her.”
“Her family always wanted her to participate in these talent shows, but I didn’t want her to,” he said, according to The Guardian . “We argued a lot because of that. She was going to participate in O Ses Türkiye before, but I did not allow that. She listened to me and did not participate in that competition.”
He admitted to drinking on the night of the shooting, and blamed the victim, Kaya, for his bad habits.
“When I met her I neither drank nor smoked. I started that because of all these worries.
Kaya was mentored by Sibel Can, a famous and beloved female Turkish folk singer.
Can personally recruited the beautiful young singer from a school cafeteria in Diyarbakir, a city where “conservative forces have constantly been trying to suppress women,” reporters the International Business Times .
Kaya had complained to cops about threats from her ex-boyfriend -- and from her father's relatives.
Turkish cops are placing the blame for the attack squarely on Veysel E.
Her dad told the BBC's Turkish service his daughter remained unconscious and in critical condition in hospital.
The shooting, Mehmet Kaya says , happened early Monday as he slept, he says.
The attacker broke the window of the house, “drew the curtain and shot my girl in the head," he said.
The dad lashed out at reports that his own family had a role in the shooting.
"The media portrayed our situation badly," he told the BBC.
"Yes I am in a tribe. But we don't have any of this honor killing nonsense. I enrolled my daughter into school myself. We are knowledgeable. We are a family that believes in democracy. Would any father do anything like this to his daughter?”
"I am proud of her. And then am I to hurt her? There is no truth to those claims."
Mutlu Kaya's uncle, Mehmet Nesih Gunes, told the BBC the attack was "violent barbarity.”
"It can't be described in any other way,” he said. "She was so young. Beginning her career. To try to kill someone like that is to kill humanity."
The Guardian writes:
There has been a surge of violence against women in Turkey, with almost 300 murdered in the last year, many of them by their husbands, boyfriends or relatives. A 2013 nationwide survey found that 34% of men thought domestic violence was “occasionally necessary”, while 28% believed violence was an acceptable tool “to discipline women”.
The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has repeatedly claimed that “men and women were not equal, but completed each other."
John A. Oswald is editor-at-large for Metro.US. Follow him on Twitter - @nyc_oz.