In a major update to the story we published yesterday about a refugee couple being separated by Metro Nashville Police, who charged the husband with felony statutory rape and committed the wife to DCS Custody, we have just learned that all charges are being dropped and the wife is being released from DCS custody. Metro Nashville Police say there was an error in determining her date of birth, which was actually in 2003, not 2006, making her 18-years-old, soon to be 19.
Metro Nashville Police said in a statement, in part: “Officers on the scene were given the young woman’s U.S. government-issued work permit which listed her, in error, as being born in 2006 which made it appear that she was 15. Her Afghan birth certificate has now been obtained which has her correct birth year as 2003. She is 18, soon to be 19. Efforts are underway with the District Attorney’s office to dismiss the charge against Mr. Feda”
Metro Nashville Police initially responded to a 3rd party call about a domestic dispute early Tuesday morning. They met with 25-year-old Maseehullah Feda and his wife, who explained they were a married couple and were recently-arrived refugees from Afghanistan. As police were reviewing their provided and valid Employment Authorization cards they found the wife’s age to be 15. While allowable with permission in the country in which they were married (and also in Hawaii, Missouri, Montana, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire), police were not going to allow it in Tennessee. Officers inquired about the sexual activities of the married couple, and they admitted they had sex within the past day, as they were married. Officer Paul Hughes took Feda into custody and charged him with felony statutory rape of his wife. Feda remains in jail, while his wife was removed from their home and taken into the custody of DCS.
The District Attorney’s Office responded to our inquiries on this story, stating it was an “incredibly interesting case” they are researching and will have additional information at a later date, as this only occurred a few hours ago.
Maseehullah Feda was booked into the Metro Nashville Jail, charged with aggravated statutory rape. A commissioner set his bond at $3,500.