Aniah Blanchard, Stepdaughter of UFC Fighter Walt Harris, Apparently Fought for Her Life: Court Documents
The 19-year-old college student "went for the gun," her accused killer told a witness, police said.
Alabama college student Aniah Blanchard apparently fought for her life before being shot to death by her abductor, according to court documents made public this week.
The 19-year-old stepdaughter of UFC fighter Walt Harris "went for the gun," before being allegedly shot by Ibraheem Yazeed, an acquaintance told investigators, according to an affidavit filed by Lee County prosecutors.
According to the document, Yazeed, 29, told the acquaintance that he shot Blanchard after she grabbed for his weapon. Yazeed was charged last week with capital murder in Blanchard's death. He is also accused of kidnapping her from a gas station on Oct. 23.
Surveillance footage showed Blanchard inside the station's convenience store and Yazeed was captured on camera in the market at the same time, authorities said.
A witness later told police he saw Blanchard being forced into a car against her will, investigators said. The witness told officers he didn't immediately report what he saw because his companion told him not to get involved in what they thought was a domestic dispute.
Two days later, her black Honda was found abandoned about 50 miles away in Montgomery. The car had several dents and copious amounts of her blood inside, which showed she had suffered a “life-threatening injury,” authorities said at the time.
Her body was found a month later, on Nov. 25, in neighboring Macon County, after desperate searches were conducted by authorities, friends, family and volunteers.
At the time of his Nov. 7 arrest, Yazeed was free on bond in an earlier kidnapping case in which prosecutors said he nearly beat to death an elderly man, authorities said. He was charged with attempted murder, first-degree kidnapping and first-degree robbery in that case, The Associated Press reported.
A judge has since issued a gag order in Blanchard's case, barring lawyers and possible witnesses from discussing the proceedings. Yazeed is being held without bail.
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