Court questions housewife for allegedly trying to kill maid

September 1, 2011

The case was referred back to prosecutors who questioned the Yemeni housewife over allegedly trying to kill the 18-year-old maid by throwing her from the kitchen balcony after battering her face with a hammer which resulted in a speech impediment.

“The court decided that 18-year-old Z.A. did not attempt suicide. The circumstantial evidence and primary investigations corroborate what Z.A. claimed that her 27-year-old Yemeni employer battered her face with a hammer and hit her with a rope, and threw her off the balcony. The case has been referred to the Public Prosecution whereby 27-year-old U.M. has to be questioned for premeditatedly attempting to murder Z.A.,” according to the primary verdict sheet.
According to the charge sheet, prosecutors earlier said Z.A. tried to commit suicide by jumping off the balcony of U.M.’s flat in Al Qusais. When questioned in hospital, Z.A. claimed to prosecutors that she did not commit suicide. She alleged that her employer, U.M., used to torture her and batter her with a hammer and hit her with a rope. According to court records, the prosecutor questioned Z.A. over many sessions because it was quite evident [to the prosecutor] that she suffered from a speech impediment.

The maid failed to appear before the Misdemeanors Court despite being subpoenaed several times. Thereafter, the judge issued an arrest warrant and ordered the maid be produced in court. Z.A. was on a wheelchair when law enforcement officers brought her to the courtroom.

The judge noticed that she had a speech impediment.

Z.A.’s acquaintance, an Ethiopian man, told the presiding judge during the trial that he comes from the same village in Ethiopia as her.

“When I visited her in hospital she alleged to me that U.M. deprived her of her salary for five months. She also claimed to me that her employer prevented her from travelling to Ethiopia to visit her mother who was on her deathbed. An Ethiopian maid, who worked at the hospital, was told by Z.A. that her employer attacked her and the maid is willing to testify on that in court,” the Ethiopian man told the court.

U.M. claimed to the police that on the day of the incident Z.A. was acting strangely and spoke gibberish. The Yemeni woman also alleged that Z.A. opened the balcony’s blinds and jumped out of the balcony. U.M. claimed that her maid’s facial injuries were due to the fall.

The Misdemeanor Court decided that Z.A. had no criminal intention or any motivation to commit suicide. “The medical report said Z.A. sustained several fractures to her face. A police major, who examined the flat, testified that the blinds were ripped off. The court considers that Z.A. had no intention to jump from the balcony and did not commit suicideā€¦ otherwise she would not have tried to save herself by grabbing the blinds.”

Prosecution sources told Gulf News that the investigation continues.