“You should be proud of me. I’m a martyr now. I’m going to go to heaven,” proclaimed Naveed Haq to his mother just days after he killed one woman and wounded five others at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.
The audio recording of Haq’s jailhouse call was among 10 played Wednesday by King County prosecutors who are trying to convince jurors that Haq was fully aware of his actions when he forced his way into the federation’s Belltown office on July 28, 2006, and indiscriminately began firing at employees. Pamela Waechter, the federation’s 58-year-old campaign director, was killed.
“I’m proud of what I did,” Haq said to his sobbing mother in one call placed from the King County Jail to his parent’s home in the Tri-Cities. “I’m a soldier. I’m a soldier of Islam.”
Haq has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. His attorneys say mental illness prevented him from fully understanding the nature of his actions. They say he should be sent to Western State Hospital rather than prison.
Since late last month, Haq has been on trial for 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. He faces life in prison without the possibility of parole if found guilty of the aggravated murder charge.
Haq was tried last year, but a judge declared a mistrial after jurors said they were deadlocked on all but one of 15 counts.
“In reviewing the first trial and strategizing how to present the second trial we decided to pursue the jail phone calls to see what they would yield about Haq,” Goodhew said.
Haq is accused of forcing his way into the Federation and randomly shooting employees. In addition to Waechter’s death, Cheryl Stumbo, Carol Goldman, Dayna Klein, Christina Rexroad and Layla Bush were wounded.
Witnesses said Haq, who is of Pakistani heritage, railed against Jews and U.S. policies with Israel as he opened fire inside the federation. Haq surrendered after telling a 911 dispatcher that he was tired of the world ignoring the Muslim point of view. He said his attack on the federation was his chance to make his point of view heard.
Haq, now 34, told his family he was a “jihadi” and that he “wanted to die on the battlefield.” SEATTLE TIMES Thanks to Henry
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