Kenyan Man in New Jersey Charged for Killing His Estranged Wife
Blood found on a Bloomfield man’s clothing links him to the 2011 stabbing of his estranged wife, whose lifeless body was discovered in a Montclair apartment when her 8-year-old daughter awoke in the middle of the night unable to find her mother, an Essex County prosecutor said today.
Assistant Prosecutor Rachel Gran told jurors in Newark that blood found on Khalid Khan’s pants and on the driver’s side door of a car he borrowed tie him to the July 3, 2011, slaying of Shazmina Khan.
The 31-year-old single mother, who worked seven days a week at a Montclair Laundromat café was stabbed to death sometime after 10 p.m. in the second-floor apartment she shared with her daughter, prosecutors say.
“Shazmina Khan had a lot of plans for July 4th, “ Gran told jurors as Khan’s murder trial opened in Superior Court. “She had a lot of plans for the future. Those plans did not include Khalid Khan.”
Whether out of jealousy, revenge or a need for control, Khan, 44, a former bus driver, stabbed his wife multiple times in the neck with a sharp object, Gran said.
“It’s a refusal to accept ‘no’ ” Gran said.
Shazmina Khan’s bloodied body was found in the locked bathroom of the Wheeler Street apartment when neighbors, alerted by a frantic middle-of-the night phone call from her daughter, managed to jimmy open the door, Gran said.
Khan’s body was in the bathtub and the bathroom walls were splattered with her blood, according to testimony given today. Gran said Khalid Khan had a fresh cut on his hand when police interviewed him the morning after Shazmina Khan’s body was found. The prosecutor also said blood found on the door of a car Khalid Khan was using belonged to Shazmina Khan.
The couple had separated six months before and, according to authorities, had several quarrels in the months leading up to the killing. Some months before, authorities say, she had taken out a restraining order against Khan, a native of Kenya.
Khan’s lawyer, Paul Condon, dismissed Gran’s efforts to win over the jury by detailing the victim’s devotion to her daughter.
“Sympathy has no role at all in the courtroom,” Condon said. “It’s just an attempt to mislead you.”
Condon said Khalid Khan was not wearing the pants that had his wife’s blood on them on the night she was killed but was wearing sweatpants. And he suggested the blood could have gotten there some other way.
“This is a husband and wife,” he said.
He brushed off Gran’s claim that police found no signs of forced entry into the apartment, suggesting someone else was to blame.
And, he said, his client’s actions after the slaying – calling the Montclair police repeatedly to inquire about his wife and daughter – suggest his innocence.
“He doesn’t book a flight out of the country,” Condon said. “He doesn’t make any attempt to flee.”
Gran said Khalid Khan had dropped off his daughter at her mother’s house earlier that evening and spoke to her on the phone sometime before 10 p.m. when the last text or cellphone entry was lodged on Shazmina Khan’s phone.
Some time after that, Gran said, Khalid Khan argued with Shazmina Khan because he wanted to go to a club. – NJ.com