Mt. Vernon Register-News


December 14, 2006

Trying to heal the emotional scars

Detective working on 1972 fire case wants to find a way to bring suspects to justice


MT. VERNON — Ever since the fire that changed Aidah Mahmood’s life forever, she’s been trying to find peace.

But that peace never comes.

The scars remain from being burned over more than 80 percent of her body and having 300 skin-graft surgeries. But the scars go much deeper than that.

Because of the injuries caused by the house fire and jumping from a window to try to escape, she describes herself as having a “broken body.” In addition to the damage to her arms and hands, she also suffered a broken hip and back and must take pain killers.

The blood she was given during transfusions to save her life was tainted with hepatitis C, which attacked her pancreas; because of that, her eyesight has dwindled.

She was also left homeless, basically living on the streets after being released from the Shriner’s Cincinnati Burn Center months after the fire.

Her family also scattered.

Mahmood alleges that after the fire, her father had her brothers transported to Jerusalem, where they spent two years so they couldn’t be questioned abut what happened in Mt. Vernon. Her parents moved to Belleville, along with her sisters.

Mahmood tries to block the fire out of her mind, but that’s not easily done.

“My mind tries to shut it out, but it really can’t. I just don’t know how they got away with this,” Aidah said, speaking of her father, Ike Mahmood, and uncle, Mike Mahmood, whom she alleges tried to kill her by setting her on fire while she was sleeping.

Mt. Vernon Police Detective Ken McElroy, the department’s spokesman for the case, said he also can’t fathom that the two men weren’t arrested, because the evidence was there:

Text Only
  • Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 2.21.22 PM.png VIDEO: Dog 'faints' from excitement of seeing owner

    A reunion between a Pennsylvania woman who had been living overseas for two years and her pet schnauzer has gone viral, garnering nearly 20 million views on YouTube.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • cleaning supplies Don't judge mothers with messy homes

    I was building shelves in my garage when a neighbor girl, one of my 4-year-old daughter's friends, approached me and said, "I just saw in your house. It's pretty dirty. Norah's mommy needs to clean more."

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Has the ipad lost its swag?

      The company reported this week that sales of its sleek, pricey tablet were down 19 percent from last quarter and 9 percent year-over-year. CEO Tim Cook tried to reassure investors that Apple's new partnership with IBM to sell its devices to IBM's corporate customers will help make iPads ubiquitous in the workplace. "This isn't something that worries us," he said of the iPad sales decline. But the numbers are disappointing no matter how you spin them.

    July 24, 2014

  • Darth Vader is polling higher than all potential 2016 presidential candidates

    On the other hand, with a net favorability of -8, Jar Jar is considerably more popular than the U.S. Congress, which currently enjoys a net favorability rating of -65.

    July 23, 2014

  • Hospitals let patients schedule ER visits

    Three times within a week, 34-year-old Michael Granillo went to the emergency room at Northridge Hospital Medical Center in Los Angeles because of intense back pain. Each time, Granillo, who didn't have insurance, stayed for less than an hour before leaving without being seen by a doctor.

    July 22, 2014

  • Wal-Mart to cut prices more aggressively in back-to-school push

    Wal-Mart Stores plans to cut prices more aggressively during this year's back-to-school season and will add inventory to its online store as the chain battles retailers for student spending.

    July 21, 2014

  • Your chocolate addiction is only going to get more expensive

    For nearly two years, cocoa prices have been on the rise. Finally, that's affecting the price you pay for a bar of chocolate - and there's reason to believe it's only the beginning.

    July 18, 2014

  • web_starbucks-cof_big_ce.jpg Starbucks sees more Apple-like stores after Colombia debut

    This week Starbucks opened its first location in Colombia — a 2,700-square-foot store with a heated patio, concrete columns, mirrors on the ceiling and walls of colorful plants.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 11.16.48 AM.png VIDEO: Comcast apologizes after customer service call goes viral

    Comcast issued an apology after one of its representatives kept a customer captive on the phone for nearly 20 minutes, demanding to know why he was choosing another cable provider.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20110929_bowling.jpg Why fewer people go bowling

    Like other industries facing tough economic times, America's bowling centers are trying to reinvent themselves.

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

Twitter Updates