A woman who unsuccessfully attacked Canadian Tire employees with a golf club and an arrowless archery bow admitted in court that her poorly orchestrated terror attack was inspired by ISIS.
In a Toronto courtroom on Wednesday, Rehab Dughmosh listened to a lengthy statement of facts outlining what happened on June 3, 2017, which led to her fateful visit to the Scarborough Canadian Tire at the Cedarbrae Mall. At the end of the list, according to the CBC, the 34-year-old was asked if she agreed to the facts and she responded with a simple, “yes.”
According to the statement of facts, Dughmosh was radicalized online in 2014 which is when she swore allegiance to ISIS. On the day of her attack she started her preperations spent organizing and manufacturing homemade weapons—a search of her home after the attack found a total of 36 weapons. Among them were were an assortment of knives and scissors, a child’s shovel converted into a clawed weapon, arrows, straws with screws glued to the tips, and a whole lot of barbecue skewers.
After she had packed all these weapons away and headed out the door of her Scarborough apartment she ran into a familiar face—her estranged husband. The man asked and then checked what she had in the bags, upon seeing the weapons, he took them away from her. But, in sneaky-sneaky twist straight out of a Coen Brothers film, he didn’t know that she had hidden a butchers knife and archery bow underneath her robe—although the latter proved to be kinda useless as her arrows were in her bag.
Not yet deterred, Dughmosh made her way to her local Canadian Tire shortly before five that evening. Once there she perused the store looking for weapons that could help her—like arrows for her lonely bow. However, Dughmosh was thwarted again when an employee told her that they couldn’t just give her a set of arrows in the store and instead would have to give it to the cashier at the front. Dughmosh didn’t have money at the moment, meaning she couldn’t just buy the arrows. So she continued to shop and filled her basket with the best makeshift weapons she could actually get her hands on, like a hammer, a wrench, and a pair of pliers.
With her weapons now stocked, Dughmosh stole a golf club of a shelf and hid in an aisle as she prepped for her attack, putting on an ISIS bandana and unrolling a homemade banner she made for the terror cell with spraypaint. She slung her bow—which remember, didn't have arrows—over her shoulder and headed to the paint section which is where she would start her attack. According to the statement of facts, Dughmosh saw two employees helping some customers and sprung, swinging the club at them while yelling “Allah Ackbar” and “this is for ISIS” repeatedly.
Almost immediately the club was wrestled from her hand by a Canadian Tire employee. Dughmosh then pulled her knife and, again, was thwarted when she was wrestled to the ground and a different employee pried the knife from her. While pinned on the ground Dughmosh was asked by an employee what the fuck she was doing and if she was trying to kill people for ISIS.
"Yes. When you kill us, we will kill you ... When you kill Muslims, you have to pay for it from your blood,” she said.
Then, like a villain in a bad movie, Dughmosh decided to explain her backstory to the employees restraining her as they waited for the cops. This wasn’t Dughmosh’s first dance with the infamous Islamist terror cell, you see. Two years after initial radicalization, Dughmosh boarded a plane headed to Turkey in 2016 to enter Syria through a Turkish border town. Once she left though, her brother notified authorities about her intentions to join ISIS. As a result, Dughmosh was denied entry to the country and forced onto the first returning flight to Toronto.
Once back she denied her brother’s claims—saying she was trying to visit family—and the RCMP decided to close the case into her. She told the employee that she still wanted to go to Syria and he asked her that while she was waiting "in the meantime, you're going to kill people in Canada?" Dughmosh said yes and explained it was because of “revenge.”
According to the statement of facts, Dughmosh was bummed that she wasn’t able to hurt anyone in her gambit but was happy she attempted an attack. No one was seriously hurt but one of the employees did walk away with some bruises and a bite mark after Dughmosh chomped on him.
Dughmosh is representing herself in the trial, she faces four terror-related charges—it was initially 21 but several were dropped—these include two counts of assault with a weapon, one of carrying a weapon, and a charge related to her attempt to go overseas to join a terrorist organization. Although she agreed to the statement of facts, Dughmosh has more or less refused to take part in the trial—most likely because she doesn’t acknowledge the power of the Crown—and so the Crown entered defacto “not guilty” pleas for her.
After short deliberations on Thursday, Dughmosh was found guilty of the charges—she has yet to be sentenced.
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