Tag Archives: Bus Station

‘SUDDEN JIHAD’ SYNDROME? Missouri Bus Station Murder Shares Much in Common with Boston Marathon Bombing

The Boston Marathon Bombing trial garnered a lot of media attention in recent days, in part, because the men suspected of committing the attack were Muslims and the attack itself bore earmarks of Islamic terrorism.  Conversely, a deadly shooting that took place in Missouri almost four years ago involved a Muslim man as the alleged shooter but has received little news coverage beyond the Show-Me State.

Mohamed H. Dawod

Mohamed H. Dawod

Less than 48 hours before the 10th anniversary of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, witnesses say then-25-year-old Mohamed H. Dawod shot to death Justin Hall, 32, of Mt. Vernon, Ohio, at a Greyhound bus station in Springfield, Mo. Soon after the shooting, Dawod found himself facing charges of first-degree murder and armed criminal action.

Almost two years of hearings and mental health assessments followed, and Dawod was committed to a mental institution to face mental evaluations every six months until he is deemed competent to stand trial or permanently committed.

Should Dawod face trial instead of remaining in a mental institution?

Some might claim Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19-year-old Boston Marathon bomber, was crazy when he participated in the plot that killed three spectators and wounded more than 260 others at the site of the famous footrace. Still, he was found guilty of multiple crimes, including murder, for his actions in concert with his 26-year-old brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who died in a shootout with police hours after the bombing.

Witnesses reported Dawod and his alleged victim were passengers on a bus traveling from Amarillo, Texas, but did not to know each other, and were preparing to board the bus for the last leg of the journey to St. Louis when the shooting took place.

Soon after the shooting took place, police officials in Missouri’s third-largest city were quick to label the incident involving the Glendale, Ariz., native as “random,” according to a Sept. 9, 2011, report in the Springfield News-Leader.

According to a local television report the same day, those same police officials said that, because of a language barrier, they had only learned Dawod’s name and had asked the FBI to help them with the investigation.  Also in that report was this:

Ten separate witnesses say they did not notice the men fighting or arguing before the shooting.  One passenger said she watched the suspect wander around the terminal until the call to line up to re-board the bus.  “She then observed the suspect remove a silver and black handgun from a back pack he was carrying,” the officer wrote.  “The suspect then pointed the handgun upward while saying something.  The witness could not understand what the suspect said and didn’t know if he was speaking English.”  No matter what was said the witness said Hall didn’t react or turn around.  Shortly after the witness says Dawod shot him from a few feet away.

Soon after the shooting, I wondered aloud whether the words Dawod reportedly shouted as he pointed his gun in the air could have been “Alluh Akbar,” the cry that’s been heard coming from the mouths of so many Islamic extremists moments before they suffer from so-called “sudden jihad syndrome.”  Unable to answer that question with certainty, I pointed readers to a same-day report in the Springfield News-Leader that contained more insight about the supposed “language barrier.”

Click image above to read charges filed against Mohamed H. Dawod in Greene County, Mo.

Click image above to read charges filed against Mohamed H. Dawod in Greene County, Mo.

Based largely on interviews with three people who were at the scene of the shooting, the article noted two observations I had made early on in my coverage of the case — that is, the shooter tried to fire again but could not because his gun jammed and witnesses believed the shooter intended to shoot several people.  In addition, however, it noted that Patrick Beeman, Hall’s traveling companion, said Dawod asked police a question in English after he was arrested:  “He said, ‘if I quit shooting at people, can I get back on the bus?’”  In other words, he does speak English!

Because I haven’t seen any news coverage of the Dawod case since the report of Dawod being committed, I sent email messages to two people — Dawod’s defense attorney, Stuart Paul Huffman, and Greene County, Mo., Prosecutor Dan Patterson — this morning. In my message, I requested “as much detail as possible” about Dawod’s status.

As soon as I hear back from these men, I will provide an update in this space. Stay tuned.

UPDATE 5/15/2015 at 1:25 p.m. Central:  Dawod has been declared incompetent to proceed with trial, according to Greene County Prosecutor Dan Patterson as reported in this article published Thursday. The next step? A probate court proceeding will take place and Keith Schafer, director of the Missouri Department of Mental Health, will decide whether to move forward with either commitment or guardianship proceedings.

For links to other articles of interest as well as photos and commentary, join me on Facebook and Twitter.  Please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  To learn how to order signed copies, click here. Thanks in advance!

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Bob McCarty’s Weekly Recap: Dec. 14-20

After sharing my weekly recap one week ago today, another piece of news arrived unexpected via my Facebook page. I shared it under the headline, The National Bet ‘Thoroughly Engrossing Crime Thriller’. Then I went about covering a plethora of news, ranging from the arrest of an FBI agent to agreeing with a slick-talking Democrat. Below is recap of the past seven days at BobMcCarty.com:

Click on image above to order a copy of The National Bet.

Click on image above to order a copy of The National Bet.

Sunday, Dec. 14 — While spending most of the day working on my next book, I did find time to read a St. Louis Post-Dispatch article concerning the CIA’s Enhanced Interrogation Techniques and share the following observations about it on my Facebook page: Like most in the news media, the Post-Dispatch ignores the fact that Nancy Pelosi and many others in Congress APPROVED THE USE OF THE CIA INTERROGATION TECHNIQUES that have been in the news this month. According to the documents obtained by JudicialWatch.org, the CIA briefed at least 68 members of Congress on the CIA interrogation program, including so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” between 2001 and 2007. The documents include the dates of all congressional briefings and, in some cases, the members of Congress in attendance and the specific subjects discussed. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who previously denied she was briefed by the CIA on the use of these techniques, is specifically referenced in a briefing that took place on April 24, 2002, regarding the “ongoing interrogations of Abu Zubaydah.” Details at http://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/judicial-watch-obtains-documents-regarding-congressional-cia-torture-briefings/.

Monday, Dec. 15 — After news broke about a hostage standoff in Sydney, Australia, I used my Facebook page again to remind folks of a deadly shooting which received very little news coverage beyond the local outlets after it took place Sept. 11, 2011, at a bus station in Springfield, Mo. I reported on the shooting several times, but the story, Was It “Sudden Jihad Syndrome” or Something Else, sums things up pretty well.

Tuesday, Dec. 16 — I shared news about the arrest of an FBI agent only weeks after he was accused of witness tampering. It’s the latest news from the Oklahoma City Bombing trial going on now in Salt Lake City. In addition, I gave a retired Navy admiral a Facebook pat on the back for his opinion piece that appeared in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Wednesday, Dec. 17 — I began the day by sharing my unique angle related to the CIA’s Enhanced Interrogation Techniques. I followed that with a mid-day appearance on The Scott Horton Show, a popular libertarian radio program. Later that day, I reluctantly had to call out one of the Fox News Channel‘s most popular hosts. Find out why by reading my post, Note to Megyn Kelly: No Need For So Much Hype.

Thursday, Dec. 18 — After telling my Facebook friends how strange it felt to receive an email message from one of my U.S. senators — with whom I disagree on almost everything — about the recent passage of a $1.1 trillion cromnibus spending package, I decided to share the opening paragraphs of that message and see if they could guess who sent it before I revealed the sender’s name. Read the details at Which United States Senator Sent This Message? In a same-day updates on my Facebook page, I also shared a link to ‘That Others May Live,” an excerpt from my first crime-fiction novel, The National Bet.

Friday, Dec. 19 — I spent most of the day working on the outline for another fiction book idea that came to mind after reading an unusual news article. Still, I managed to squeeze in some snark on my Facebook page after reading a Navy Times article: I have no personal experience with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. That said, this article seems to indicate there is a problem within NCIS. Perhaps, they’re trying to catch up with the Army. More info at http://ThreeDaysInAugust.com.

Saturday, Dec. 20 — I continue working on the book idea mentioned in the Friday paragraph above.

FYI:  Perhaps, I’m biased, but I think my books make excellent Christmas gifts. Ordering info appears below!

For links to other articles of interest as well as photos and commentary, join me on Facebook and Twitter.  Please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Was It ‘Sudden Jihad Syndrome’ or Something Else? Suspect in Bus Station Murder Still Not Prosecuted After Three Years

Three years ago this week, Mohamed Dawod found himself charged with the murder of Justin Hall, 32, of Mt. Vernon, Ohio, at a Greyhound bus station in Springfield, Mo. As of today, he has not been prosecuted for his alleged role in the deadly shooting that took place less than 48 hours before the 10th anniversary of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Mohamed H. Dawod

Mohamed H. Dawod

Whether or not terrorism was involved, however, remains up in the air to this day, thanks in part to officials in the Southwest Missouri community who were quick to say the shooting by the 25-year-old from Scottsdale, Ariz., appeared random, according to a report in the Springfield News-Leader. But was it really?

According to a Sept. 9, 2011, report on KSPR-TV, Springfield police said that, because of a language barrier, they only learned Dawod’s name and have asked the FBI to help them with the investigation. Also in that report was this telling paragraph:

Ten separate witnesses say they did not notice the men fighting or arguing before the shooting. One passenger said she watched the suspect wander around the terminal until the call to line up to re-board the bus. “She then observed the suspect remove a silver and black handgun from a back pack he was carrying,” the officer wrote. “The suspect then pointed the handgun upward while saying something. The witness could not understand what the suspect said and didn’t know if he was speaking English.” No matter what was said the witness said Hall didn’t react or turn around. Shortly after the witness says Dawod shot him from a few feet away.

Witnesses featured in two television news reports, however, seem to reveal more than the “official” story lets on about the deadly incident that involved a man with a Muslim name and Middle East appearance shooting someone he did not know less than 48 hours ahead of the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States.

The first television report, which aired on St. Louis NBC affiliate KSDK prior to any names being released or charges filed, featured witnesses saying it appeared the assailant would have kept shooting if not for the fact that his gun jammed. The second report, which aired on the same station after the Springfield Police Department announced the alleged shooter’s name and charges against him, offered much the same story.

Not surprisingly, Dawod pleaded not guilty during an arraignment Sept. 12, 2011. The extent to which Dawod would carry out some form of “legal jihad” — that is, causing the U.S. court system to waste as much time, effort and money as possible on his case — remained to be seen.

Could it be that, when Dawod pointed the handgun in the air, he shouted, “Alluh Akbar,” the cry that’s been heard coming from the mouths of so many Islamic extremists moments before they suffer from so-called “sudden jihad syndrome”? No answer to that question yet, so let’s fast-forward to a news report published Sept. 14, 2011, in the Springfield News-Leader.

Based largely on interviews with three people who were at the scene of the shooting, the article included two observations — that the shooter tried to fire again but could not because his gun jammed and that the witnesses believed the shooter intended to shoot several people. In addition, however, it noted that Patrick Beeman, a friend and traveling companion of the victim, said Dawod asked police a question in English after he was arrested: “He said, ‘if I quit shooting at people, can I get back on the bus?'” That, of course, made many wonder if he spoke and understood English after all.

On Sept. 25, 2011, it was revealed in another report — no longer online at NBC4i.com — that, in addition to a handgun, Dawod had a 9-inch knife and 37 rounds of ammunition when arrested.

Within 90 days of his arrest, Dawod was ordered by a judge to undergo psychiatric evaluations, and today, it seems, he remains “under observation.” Though I searched for updated information on CaseNet, the online site where one can typically find information related to civil and criminal cases, I could find no record of the Dawod case.

UPDATE: After publishing this piece, I came across an article in which it was explained Dawod had been committed to a mental institution and will likely be evaluated at six-month intervals to determine whether he is fit to stand trial.

UPDATE 5/15/2015 at 1:26 p.m. Central:  Dawod has been declared incompetent to proceed with trial, according to Greene County Prosecutor Dan Patterson as reported in this article published Thursday. The next step? A probate court proceeding will take place and Keith Schafer, director of the Missouri Department of Mental Health, will decide whether to move forward with either commitment or guardianship proceedings.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.