A Rochester mother charged with attempting to kill her five children last fall pleaded not guilty to the charges earlier this week and made a demand for a jury trial.
Farhiyo Mohamed Abdullahi, 33, pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Olmsted County District Court to 10 felony charges -- five counts of first-degree attempted murder-premeditated and five counts of endangering a child. A date for a jury trial has not been set.
Police went to Abdullahi's home on Oct. 2, 2019, after a family member called to report that Abdullahi had locked her five children in a car for a few hours. Police did not have enough evidence to take her into custody on charges or for a mental health evaluation at the time. However, as police left the building, a neighbor flagged them down to tell them a fight was happening in Abdullahi’s home. They found Abdullahi being held down by her 24-year-old sister to prevent Abdullahi from assaulting her, Rochester Police Lt. Mike Sadauskis said shortly after the incident.
When police later interviewed Abdullahi’s children — ages 11, 10, 9, 7 and 4 — they learned about an attempted suicide.
Abdullahi allegedly admitted to police she had tried to kill herself and the children, but "it didn’t work out," according to the complaint filed against her.
"(Abdullahi) had hoped that they would all die peacefully," the complaint states.
Abdullahi was found incompetent to stand trial in December and was civilly committed for treatment for mental illness. In February, she was provisionally discharged from a treatment facility and returned to the Olmsted County Adult Detention Center. In March, she was found competent to stand trial.