Nothing can bring Adam Simjee back from the “dystopian nightmare” that ended his life. However, those who mourn him can take some solace in the fact some measure of justice was meted out to his killers.
According to Law & Crime, 22-year-old Simjee was killed in 2022 after he and his girlfriend, Mikayla Paulus, pulled over to the side of the road to help a woman that said her car had broken down. After she led the couple into the forest and pulled a gun on them, Simjee fought back with a gun of his own — and while he wounded the robber with four shots, he was killed by her.
However, on Thursday, 37-year-old Krystal Diane Pinkins — the mastermind of the robbery — received life in prison, while her accomplice, 21-year-old Yasmine Marie Adel Hider, received 35 years.
The incident happened on Aug. 14, 2022 in Alabama’s Talladega National Forest. Simjee and Paulus were “traveling and sleeping in Victim #1’s 2010 white Chevrolet Uplander van [and] looking for waterfalls in Cheaha State Park, when HIDER flagged the couple down and said she needed help with her broken down vehicle, a blue XB Scion, which was located about an eighth of a mile away,” according to court documents.
The two, who “were simply being Good Samaritans,” stopped and agreed to help. As Simjee attempted to jump-start the vehicle, however, Hider pulled her weapon and told the two to “empty their pockets and to walk further into the woods.”
When Simjee pulled the gun on Hider, the armed robber responded by saying, “Are you serious?”
“She cocked her gun and started firing, and Victim # 1 returned fire simultaneously while falling to the ground,” court documents allege. “While on the ground, Victim #1 said, ‘You shot me,’ and fired one last time at HIDER. After the shooting stopped, HIDER said, ‘Why did you shoot? It wasn’t supposed to be like this.’”
Police were called — and the scene they encountered was brutal: “Upon arrival, agents observed a white male victim, Victim #1, lying dead from one gunshot wound to the abdomen. The killer, Yasmine Marie Adel HIDER, a black female, was seated several feet away against a fallen pine tree with four gun-shot wounds, three to the abdomen and one to the upper right leg,” court documents said.
“Victim #1’s girlfriend, a white female, Victim #2, had witnessed the crime and was being comforted by responding officers. Victim #2 pointed at HIDER and told the responding officers, ‘she shot him.’”
“HIDER stated to the responding officers that she and her family lived in the woods, and she was asking for a ride to get food. HIDER asked the officers, ‘I’m going to do time, right? I just want to know how much time?’” the prosecution noted. “This was recorded by the agent’s body cam.”
At a hospital five days later, Hider expressed remourse, saying of Simjee: “I took his whole life away” and swearing that “I didn’t want to hurt anybody.”
—Yasmine Hider, 21, flagged down a college couple that were sightseeing in Alabama’s Cheaha State Park.
Hider told the college sweethearts that her Scion had broke down a couple of hundred yards away and asked if they could help her.
Adam Simjee and his girlfriend, Mikayla… pic.twitter.com/pyjo4zVrGV
— Amiri King (@AmiriKing) September 15, 2023
Meanwhile, Pinkins was located at an encampment in the forest and was taken into custody six hours after the shooting — but not before her 5-year-old son allegedly ran out of the woods and accosted officers with a loaded shotgun.
Hider would plead guilty and turn evidence against Pinkins. According to prosecutors, the 35-year-old not only hatched the plan, she provided the murder weapon and saw how the shooting played out from “base camp.” She’ll be spending 35 years behind bars for second-degree murder, robbery and kidnapping.
Pinkins, meanwhile, was found guilty of robbery, murder and unlawful use of a firearm during a crime of violence, only being acquitted on kidnapping charges. She’ll be spending life behind bars.
A cousin of Simjee’s, Ali Irshad, called the scenario that claimed the 22-year-old’s life “a story from a dystopian nightmare scenario” on a GoFundMe page.
“Rest in power, little brother – we will miss you. You were the best of us,” Irshad wrote.
Paulus, meanwhile, called Simjee a “hero” in a Facebook post.
“No words can begin to describe the shock and pain I’m in. It comforts me to say he passed in one of his favorite places, the forest in the mountains,” Paulus said in a Facebook post, according to NewsNation. “I’m so happy Adam is getting recognized as the hero he was. He was so selfless & would do anything for someone he loved. If it wasn’t for him, I don’t know if I’d be here right now.”
It would be better of Adam Simjee was here, of course. The next best thing is a justice system that fairly and swiftly delivers punishment to those responsible.
In this case, the system worked. Let’s hope it works to keep Pinkins and Hider behind bars for as long as possible.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.