News Remember Naveed Haq?
posted by June 4 at 11:05 AMon
The guy who wounded five and killed one when he opened fire at the Jewish Federation in Seattle?
The jury can’t decide whether Haq is guilty or insane. They’ve been deliberating for eight days and are deadlocked on 14 out of 15 counts, which include aggravated murder, attempted murder, and hate crimes.
I imagine them having the same debates Josh Feit and I had, sitting in his apartment, writing this feature about Haq just after the shootings.
We’d visited W. Renner, a melancholy guy who lived in this Everett apartment building with Haq:
Even Renner, Haq’s roommate, couldn’t decide whether Haq was crazy.
Haq did a lot of grousing about Israel, but he had also left Islam, converted to Christianity, left Christianity, kept getting fired from jobs, had anger management problems, behaved bizarrely (shouting at people, bringing hookers back to his and Renner’s one-bedroom apartment to screw in the bathroom), and was arrested for lewd conduct after allegedly exposing himself to ladies at a mall while high on meth.
After a few hours of deliberation on a deadline, Feit and I decided Haq was more crazy than jihadi:
While Haq’s violence exploded inside a political context—the Jewish Federation, Israel’s war in Lebanon—his motivations were those of a frustrated man, who, according to Renner, didn’t fit in anywhere and felt persecuted and embarrassed by his parents’ Pakistani background. Haq is not a jihadi, nor a radical Islamist; his anti-Semitic rhetoric seems more like a veneer of politics on a man disturbed by feelings of inadequacy and rejection.
I wonder whether the jury—after a six-week trial, piles of evidence, and days of deliberation—will come to the same conclusion.