Remember the infamous Seattle Mass shooter, Pakistani American, Naveed Haq? He was convicted today by a Seattle Jury in a second trial. The AP report noted what he did in 2006:
Haq made several trips to gun stores in the weeks prior to the attack, wrote two documents on his father's computer criticizing Israel and U.S. policy in the Middle East, and used MapQuest to find directions to the center from his family's home in Pasco, 180 miles east of Seattle
Haq drove from his eastern Washington home to Seattle the day of the attack and forced a teenage girl at gunpoint to let him into the Jewish Federation. Once in the second-floor office, he opened fire, shooting some people in their cubicles, some in the hall and one, Pamela Waechter, fatally as she fled down a stairwell.
He shot and seriously injured five others. One of the shooting victims a woman who was pregnant was shot in her arm shielding her unborn fetus. Her child, a boy was born unharmed seven months later.
Here is the Seattle Times ‘harrowing testimony’ of Layla Bush in the first Haq trial in 2008. She has not been able to walk again:
As Layla Bush lay bleeding from a gunshot wound on the floor of her boss's office, her thoughts were a jumble.
Against a backdrop of gunfire and screaming coming from other parts of the building, Bush thought about how, as the receptionist, it was her duty to call 911 and report the rampage at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.
But the pain in her side anchored her to the floor.
"I realized that I couldn't move, so there was nothing I could do even if he was reloading," she said.
Suddenly, the gunman, Naveed Haq, returned.
"We made eye contact, and he shot me again. I believe he was trying to kill me," she testified.
According to the AP report on today’s outcome:
Haq was found guilty of all eight counts against him. The 34-year-old man will spend the rest of his life in prison.
Haq's first trial ended last year with jurors deadlocked on whether he was legally insane during the shooting spree on July 28, 2006, that left one woman dead and five others injured.
The eight counts against him included one count of aggravated first-degree murder; five counts of attempted first-degree murder; one count of unlawful imprisonment; and one count of malicious harassment, the state's hate-crime law.
Jurors on Tuesday rejected Haq's defense that he was not guilty by reason of insanity. His lawyers acknowledged that he committed the shooting but said his mental illness kept him from understanding what he was doing.
They also conceded he poses a danger to the public and should never be free, but asked jurors to send him to a state mental hospital rather than prison. They declined comment after the verdict.
Prosecutor Don Raz said he was pleased the verdict would bring closure to the victims.
Raz argued Haq wasn't insane - just angry - when he stormed the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.
"He was tired that no one was listening to the Muslim point of view. He wanted that point of view heard," Raz told jurors as Haq's second trial opened in October.
A major difference between this trial and the first was the playing of jailhouse phone calls.
In a recorded phone conversation after the shooting, Raz said, Haq told his mother, "I did a very good thing. I did it for a good reason."
She said, "I know you're not well," to which Haq replied: "Whatever, Mom."
One of Haq's lawyers, John Carpenter, argued that his client believed he could change the course of wars by attacking the Jewish Federation.
"There could be no defense for this act if it was borne by an undiseased mind," Carpenter said. "But it wasn't."
Carpenter described Haq's condition as schizoaffective disorder with bipolar tendencies and said his troubles became worse when he studied at the University of Pennsylvania. He said his client would hear voices that called him a "loser" and a "homo."
Today’s Seattle decision in the Haq case has relevance to the pending courts martial of Fort Hood mass shooter, Major Hasan. Hasan’s defense counsel has indicated that he will mount on insanity defense. In our opinion the military courts marshal should take due judicial notice of this Seattle decision. It affirms what Hasan had articulated in his Jihad Power Point presentation that he was fulfilling the will of Allah. So did Haq. Now, Haq will spend the rest of his life in prison for his Jihad. Will Hasan?
Guilty by reason of insanity maybe - the Army has a lot to lose otherwise.
Given that he was a psychiatrist, given his personnel record, given the Army's failure to remove him from duty once the power point presentation was given.
And his lawyer has been angling for an insanity plea since the very beginning.
It's going to be interesting, that's for sure.
P.S. Excellent recap of the Seattle Jewish Federation jihad attack. I was hazy on some of the details (those poor victims) and needed reminding.