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Crime County detective: 8 reasons 'honor killings' seem connected

22:40  11 july  2018
22:40  11 july  2018 Source:   houstonchronicle.com

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A sheriff's homicide detective on Wednesday laid out eight reasons why two Houston "honor killings" seem connected to Ali Mahwood-Awad Irsan, a 60-year-old fervent Muslim who is on trial for capital murder of his daughter's husband.

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County detective : 8 reasons Houston's ' honor killings ' seem . Stay Connected . View Comments.

An honor killing or shame killing is the murder of a member of a family, due to the perpetrators' belief that the victim has brought shame or dishonor upon the family

Harris County Sheriff's Office Sergeant James Dousay continued his testimony Wednesday as he pieced the prosecution's case together from evidence jurors had already heard. The death penalty trial is in its third week.

Irsan is accused of killing his daughter's husband, Coty Beavers, as well as his daughter's close female friend, Gelareh Bagherzadeh, a 30-year-old Iranian activist and medical student.

A short history: Things to know about Ali Mahwood-Awad Irsan and Houston 'honor killings'

Irsan's daughter, 30-year-old Nesreen Irsan,  in earlier testimony described  the controlling behavior of her devout Muslim father, how he threatened to kill her if she dated any men, especially Christians.

Nesreen Irsan testified that she ran away from the family compound in Montgomery County in June 2011 and lived with her fiancé at his mother's house in Spring. Her fiance, Coty, had a twin brother who also lived there and was dating Bagherzadeh, so she stayed at the house as well.

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Повторите попытку позже. Опубликовано: 11 мая 2016 г. Documentary Crime ➣ Crime & Forensic Detective Documentary _ Honor Killings Murder in the Family: Honor Killing in America (Part 1) - Продолжительность: 9:05 LinkTVWatch 242 708 просмотров.

Detective Dousay noted:

  1. Both victims had extensive connections to Nesreen Irsan.
  2. Both victims helped Nesreen Irsan "escape" from her father's control.
  3. An envelope found in Ali Irsan's sport utility vehicle had the license plate numbers for cars connected to both victims.
  4. Both victims lived for a time at the Beaver's family home in Spring. (Bagherzadeh never moved in but spent an extensive amount of time there with boyfriend Cory Beavers.)
  5. There was phone contact between Baghezadeh and Ali Irsan before her death. An outspoken young woman, she told Ali Irsan to leave Nesreen alone and told him one of his other daughters was sending nude selfies to Christian men. 
  6. Six months after Bagherzadeh was killed in January 2012, Nesreen and Coty Beavers married. They moved to an out of the way apartment complex in northwest Harris County. Before and after the move, there was criminal mischief—air being let out of tires and cars being vandalized—at both locations.
  7. Before and after the move, cell phone GPS records seem to indicate Ali Irsan or other family members were stalking Nesreen and Coty at both locations.
  8. Finally, Dousay said his investigation, including interviews with Ali Irsan's neighbors and family members, turned up proof that Irsan had previously threatened death for people who he believed disgraced his honor.  "It was my belief that the defendant believed in honor killings," Dousay said.

Under Texas law, Ali Irsan can be convicted of capital murder if the shootings were part of the same plan.

Defense attorneys for Irsan have said no one knows exactly what happened in either case, and Irsan was not connected to either.

The trial, in state District Judge Jan Krocker's court, is expected to last 6 to 8 weeks.

Brian Rogers covers Houston crime and courts. You can email him at brian.rogers@chron.com or follow him on Twitter at @brianjrogers.

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