Tashfeen Malik, 27, has been identified as the second suspect killed in a shootout alongside Syed Farook, 28, following their alleged involvement in the San Bernardino shooting that took place Wednesday.
According to information being released by those who knew the couple personally, Tashfeen had been brought back from Saudi Arabia by Farook earlier this year after he took a trip for about a month in the spring. Malik and Syed were reportedly living as man and wife, with a child, when the shooting took place in San Bernardino, reported The Los Angeles Times.
“They said Farook had traveled to Saudi Arabia and returned with a new wife [likely Tashfeen] he met online. The couple had a baby and appeared to be ‘living the American dream,’ said Patrick Baccari, a fellow inspector who shared a cubicle with Syed.”
Police have yet to confirm that Malik and Farook were indeed married, though they have stated publicly that the two were “in some kind of relationship.” Details are still scant about how long Tashfeen and Syed had been together, though it is thought that they were the biological parents of the child they were raising. Co-workers said that there had baby shower for Malik and Farook about a month earlier at the San Bernardino County’s Public Health Department — Syed’s workplace for the past several years.
While it has not been revealed how Tashfeen arrived to the scene, Syed left his place of work’s holiday party shortly before a group photo was taken. As people began to wonder where he had gone, bullets began to tear through the walls, said Patrick Baccari, who had shared a cubicle with Farook for several years.
Mailk’s religion has not yet been confirmed, but those who worked with Syed said that he was a devout Muslim, according to LA Times. Official investigators on the case have not yet classified the act as terrorism, with experts saying that there is still no clear link to what type of ideology may have influenced the attack.
Speaking at an Anaheim Islamic center, Farhan Khan, brother-in-law of Tashfeen and Farook, said that he was completely unaware of any plans that the couple may have had to carry out the mass shooting. Khan himself was floored by the news, reported AP.
“I cannot express how sad I am. I have no idea why he would do that…. I am in shock that something like this would happen. … My condolences to the people who lost their life.”
The home that Mailk and Syed shared was cautiously approached by authorities who suspected that it may be laden with explosives as has occasionally been the case in previous mass shooting situations. It appears that Tashfeen and Farook may have done so.
Police sent a robot into a Redlands home they say is connected to San Bernardino shooting where it detonated something inside the home.
— The Sun (@sbsun) December 3, 2015
Currently, little else is known about Malik outside of her association with Syed. Some media is reporting that she worked as a pharmacist, but whether or not she was of Saudi nationality or had previously lived within the United States has yet to be confirmed.
Together Tashfeen Malik and Syed Farook are estimated to have killed 14 people and injured at least 30. Ongoing investigation is anticipated to reveal whether or not the pair was linked to a terrorist network.
[Image via David McNew/Getty Images]