Jaelyn Young pleaded guilty in federal court this week after attempting to join ISIS along with her husband, who entered the same guilty plea. Jaelyn Delshaun Young, 20, was taken out of a Mississippi airport handcuffed in August, as was her husband, Muhammad Oda Dakhlalla, 23. The two were apprehended by the FBI just as they were about to board a flight to Turkey to start their lives with the ISIS, or so they thought.
According to MSN News on March 30, Young was eyed by the FBI posting her wishes to join ISIS on various social media sites. An agent then started to correspond online with Young and her husband under the ploy of being an ISIS recruiter. This eventually led the couple to that ill-fated attempt to board that flight to Turkey with the FBI waiting for them.
Fox News reports that Young was about to “trade in her pom-poms for suicide bombs,” by heading to meet up with ISIS. The reason Fox said this is because, Young was someone you might call the epitome of the all-American girl not so long ago. This beauty was an A-student at a Mississippi college, a cheerleader and someone who knew her way around beauty pageants. Most would agree she appeared far from the type to hook-up with terrorists.
In March of last year something changed and she suddenly donned a burqa and soon “distanced herself from non-Muslim friends,” reports Fox. Prosecutors said she “began to express hatred for the U.S. government” and she openly voiced “support for the implementation of Shariah law in the United States.”
Young confessed that she was the one to orchestrate the couple’s plans of hooking up with ISIS, calling herself the “planner of the expedition.” This information also came from a farewell letter Young had penned before attempting to leave for Turkey.
Both Dakhlalla and Young, were living in Starkville, Mississippi, and the two are U.S. citizens. Court documents indicate that Young converted to Islam in 2015. They had a Islamic wedding, which is not recognized as a legal marriage in the U.S.. Both Young and Dakhlalla stood before the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi, in Greenville and both plead guilty.
U.S. prosecutors agreed to not press any other charges against Young in exchange for her guilty plea. She plead guilty to a “single count of conspiring to provide material support to a designated terrorist organization,” according to MSN. This crime carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.