Two Women Charged with Murder, Kidnapping, After They Lured a Young Couple from Their Vehicle and Fatally Shot the Man

by J Pelkey
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Two women are charged with murder, robbery and kidnapping after luring a couple by pretending to be a stranded motorist and then fatally shooting Adam Simjee.

The two women, who were in the forest with a 5-year-old child, were followers of the University of Cosmic Intelligence, which critics describe as a conspiracy theory cult.

Yasmin HIder
Yasmin Hider (Left), Krystal Pinkins (Right)

From the Guardian:

Two college students set out on a leisurely drive along an isolated Alabama forest road last month, but only one returned alive.

Adam Simjee and his girlfriend, Mikayla Paulus, had no idea that their trip would end, according to authorities, in a sudden and deadly shootout with bandits living in the nearby woods.

Now the story has grown even stranger: the two women who allegedly ambushed Simjee and Paulus, killing Simjee, appear to be fans of a growing religious sect, the University of Cosmic Intelligence, whose leader is currently awaiting trial for child abuse in Georgia. Another adherent was charged earlier this year, in a separate incident, with having murdered his mother with a sword.

There is currently no evidence that the organization ordered or was aware of the alleged acts of its adherents, or that its teachings condone violence.

On 14 August, Simjee and Paulus, who were students at the University of Central Florida, were on a roadtrip they had planned as a final getaway before the start of the fall semester. The couple were victims of their own kindness, according to police. While driving on a road in the Talladega national forest, a 400,000-acre nature preserve, they stopped to aid a woman who said she was a stranded motorist.

That woman, Yasmine Hider, allegedly drew a gun to rob them and ordered them into the woods. Simjee, who had a concealed pistol, tried to fight back. He and Hider shot each other, according to police. Simjee succumbed to his wounds as his girlfriend frantically gave CPR.

A companion of Hider’s, Krystal Pinkins, was allegedly watching nearby and fled into the forest. Law enforcement trackers later discovered a camp in the nearby woods where people appeared to have been living. Police said that they disarmed Pinkins’s son after the five-year-old approached with a loaded shotgun.

Hider and Pinkins were arrested at the scene and Hider taken for gunshot treatment. Both were charged with murder, kidnapping and robbery. Pinkins was also charged with child endangerment.

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