Tashfeen Malik’s path to accused mass killer in California began in a small city on the Indus River in Pakistan’s Punjab province.
It was from here, when she was a toddler, that she moved with her father Gulzar 25 years ago to Saudi Arabia, where he became more deeply religious, more conservative and more hardline, according to a family member.
A picture slowly emerged on Friday of the role and possible motivations of 27-year-old Malik in this week’s killing of 14 people in California, including her apparent pledge of allegiance to the leader of the Islamic State militant group, according to U.S. officials.
Malik, with her husband Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, is accused of storming a holiday party on Wednesday in San Bernardino, California, and opening fire in America’s worst mass shooting in three years.
The intensive search for clues, extending to Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, could help U.S. investigators piece together what drove Malik and her husband to leave their infant daughter with his mother, don assault-style clothing and carry out the shooting.
Malik, who entered the United States on a fiancée visa, and Farook, the son of immigrant parents from Pakistan who had worked as a health inspector, were killed in a shootout with police just hours after the attack.
U.S. investigators were evaluating evidence that Malik, a Pakistani native who had been living in Saudi Arabia when she married Farook, had pledged allegiance to Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, two U.S. government sources said. They said the finding, if confirmed,…