International student accused of slitting classmate's throat in her dorm room after misunderstanding Koran
I really hope the victim can move on from this brazen attack and also hope that the young man gets the help he needs. Please remember to "not take things out of context" and understand that he is innocent until proven guilty.
The man charged with attempted murder in an attack at UBC last year admitted that he tried to kill the victim, but added that he didn't know what he was doing during the incident.
"I tried to kill her," Thamer Hameed Almestadi admitted in a videotaped interview with RCMP Sgt. Kevin Jeffrey.
"I was not aware of what I was doing at the time," he added.
Almestadi has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder, aggravated assault and assault with a weapon in the 2016 attack that left Mary Hare with serious injuries, including a five-inch-long cut to her throat.
In the hours-long interview that was played in court during day two of Almestadi's trial, the UBC student was at times crying and remorseful, asking the officer if the victim was going to survive.
When asked by Sgt. Jeffrey why he might have attacked Mary Hare with a knife Almestadi said, "I started listening to the Koran and understanding the meanings differently."
"If you read something and your mind is thinking something else, you understand differently."
Almestadi — who was 18 at the time of the incident — said he even began seeing things that weren't real.
"At that point I thought Mary was the devil," he said.
He told the officer he had confided in his mother about the thoughts he was having in the weeks leading up to the attack and had also visited a hospital to see a doctor.
Mary Hare, 20, testified Tuesday that she had only met Almestadi once briefly before the attack in her dorm room.
"I fought him off. I did everything I could have done. I don't have any regrets about what I did ... I know that I was as strong as I could have been," she said in court.