A judge will decide in November whether a 16-year-old Farmington Hills boy will stand trial for murder after he was charged as an adult in connection with his mother’s death.
During a brief hearing Friday, 47th District Judge Marla Parker set a Nov. 17 date for a preliminary examination in the second-degree murder case involving Muhammad Altantawi, who is accused of killing his mother, Nada Huranieh.
Huranieh, 35, died Aug. 21 after she fell from a second-story window of her mansion on Howard Road in Farmington Hills. Police originally considered it an accident, but later determined the fitness trainer’s death was a homicide.
Altantawi is being held in Oakland County Children’s Village without bond. On Friday, Parker allowed a request by defense attorneys David J. Kramer and Shannon Smith to let them bring a laptop into Children’s Village to prepare for the case.
“Muhammad still maintains his innocence,” Kramer said after Friday’s pretrial conference. “He’s hanging in there. He’s a resilient kid.”
Court records reviewed by The Detroit News and family acquaintances show there were problems in the home prior to Huranieh’s death, including allegations of domestic violence and Medicaid fraud charges against the defendant’s father, Bassel Altantawi, a Canton Township doctor.
The father also expressed concerns that his children were being “Americanized” by his wife in contrast to their Syrian and Islamic roots, court records show.