EL CAJON, Calif. - A 32-year-old woman from Iraq who was found severely beaten in her California home with a note left next to her saying “go back to your country’’ has died.
Shaima Alawadi was taken off life support Saturday afternoon, according to Hanif Mohebi, director of the San Diego chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
The mother of five had been hospitalized since her 17-year-old daughter found her unconscious Wednesday in the family’s house in El Cajon.
The daughter told KUSI-TV that her mother was struck repeatedly with a tire iron, and that the note said “go back to your country, you terrorist.’’
Police said the family had found a similar note earlier this month but did not report it.
A family friend, Sura Alzaidy, said the attack apparently occurred after the father took the younger children to school. Alzaidy said the family is from Iraq and Alawadi wore the traditional hijab, a head scarf.
The family had lived in the house in San Diego County for only a few weeks, after moving from Michigan, Alzaidy said.
Alzaidy said her father and Alawadi’s husband had previously worked together in San Diego as private contractors for the US Army, serving as cultural advisers to train soldiers who were going to be deployed to the Middle East.
El Cajon, northeast of downtown San Diego, is home to some 40,000 Iraqi immigrants.