Mississippi Woman Who Tried to Join Islamic State Gets 12 Years in Prison

A Mississippi woman, who was arrested last summer for attempting to fly to Syria to join the Islamic State and then pleaded guilty to federal terrorism charges has been handed a twelve-year prison sentence.

Jaelyn Delshaun Young, 20, was arrested on August 8 of last year along with her 22-year-old boyfriend, Muhammad Oda Dakhlalla, at an airport near Columbus, Mississippi. Federal authorities said the pair intended to join the Islamic State forces in Syria. They were officially charged with attempting and conspiring to provide material support to a terrorist group.

Authorities say she was radicalized as a student at the Mississippi State University.

Federal investigators presented a long series of Internet communications in court showing Young’s efforts to arrange passage to Syria for herself and her boyfriend as well as communications between the young woman and representatives of the ISIS terror group in the Middle East.

Young, the daughter of a Vicksburg, MS, police officer, was facing up to twenty years. On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock passed the sentence of twelve years as the woman’s parents pleaded for leniency, according to the Associated Press.

The convicted woman sobbed during the proceedings and claimed she was ashamed of her actions.

Her boyfriend faces his own sentencing on August 24.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.


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