PHOENIX – A young Iraqi woman whose father allegedly hit her with his car because she had become too Westernized died from her injuries Monday after laying in a coma for nearly two weeks.
Noor Faleh Almaleki, 20, underwent spinal surgery and had been in a hospital since Oct. 20, when police say her father ran down her and her boyfriend’s mother with his Jeep as the women were walking across a parking lot in the west Phoenix suburb of Peoria.
The other woman, Amal Khalaf, is expected to survive.
Faleh Hassan Almaleki, 48, fled after the attack but was arrested Thursday when he arrived at Atlanta’s airport, where he was sent from the United Kingdom after authorities denied him entrance.
Peoria police interviewed him and brought him back to Arizona over the weekend, but have declined to release what Almaleki said to them.
At a court hearing over the weekend in Phoenix, county prosecutor Stephanie Low told a judge that Almaleki admitted to committing the crime.
“By his own admission, this was an intentional act and the reason was that his daughter had brought shame on him and his family,” Low said. “This was an attempt at an honour killing.”
Family members had told police that Almaleki attacked his daughter because he believed she had become too Westernized and was not living according to his traditional Iraqi values.
Almaleki, wearing a jail uniform, said only his name and birth date during the hearing. He has declined requests to be interviewed.
Almaleki had faced charges of aggravated assault, but Peoria police spokesman Mike Tellef said the charges will be upgraded in light of Noor Faleh Almaleki’s death.
Police said the Almalekis moved to Peoria from Iraq in the mid-1990s.