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Ten Years Later, Alleged “Honor Killing” of Cleveland Woman Unpunished

The alleged “honor killing” murder of Methal Dayem in Cleveland remains unpunished 10 years after her murder in 1999.

Methal Dayem - Victim of "Honor Killing" in Cleveland, Ohio

Methal Dayem – Alleged Victim of “Honor Killing” in Cleveland, Ohio

Ten years ago, as reported by the Cleveland Plain Dealer in July 2000, “Methal Dayem, 21, was shot four times on Jan. 8, 1999. Three of the bullets hit her legs and torso. A fourth passed through the back of her neck and out through her voicebox. She died suffocating on her own blood.” “Prosecutors argued that Yezen Dayem and Musa Saleh killed their Lakewood cousin, Methal Dayem, last year because her independent ways threatened to sully the family’s reputation. The theory outraged the Dayem family, and even Methal Dayem’s parents doubted it at first, once protesting outside the Justice Center on behalf of their nephews. But as investigators began to share their evidence that this was an honor killing, Methal Dayem’s parents slowly changed their minds.”

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported: “By then, investigators believed Methal Dayem’s slaying was “Karo Kari,” or an honor killing. Men in Middle Eastern countries had for centuries murdered women who disgraced their families.” “And Cleveland police had learned that much of Methal Dayem’s family, Palestinian immigrants, were upset with Methal Dayem’s increasing independence, especially since she backed out of an arranged marriage a year before. Then Methal Dayem’s sister told them that Yezen Dayem and Saleh had started following Methal Dayem to school and to work, sometimes calling in between to check up on what she was doing.” “They had no physical evidence linking either Yezen Dayem or Saleh to the slaying and, from the beginning, both denied any involvement, but the prosecutors felt the honor killing theory was so compelling that they pushed ahead, convinced the circumstantial evidence was enough to prove their case.”

There was no conviction for the murder of the Cleveland woman Methal Dayem.

The accused individuals were acquitted in the case.  The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported‘ that the accused individuals in the alleged honor killing, “Yezen Dayem or Musa Saleh,” were acquitted.