Karim Zakikhani is currently serving time for intentionally infecting his ex-girlfriend Sarita Anderson with HIV, but it’s unknown how many other women he may have infected as well.
Sarita considers Karim to be an evil sociopath who doesn’t care how his actions affect other people.
How Sarita met Karim
Sarita met Karim at work in 2013. They were both security officers at a Houston, TX hospital. Her first impression of him was that he was charming and talkative.
One day Karim defended Sarita against an ex who showed up at work. She didn’t feel like she needed protection, but Karim’s actions that day won her trust and affection. She now sees Karim as a wolf in sheep’s clothing with ill-intentions.
Sarita also found that she was intensely attracted to Karim. The first time they were intimate he Sarita it was up to her if they used protection.
Sarita chose to use a condom, but she realizes that at that time he knew he was HIV+ and if she had chosen to not use a condom, it wouldn’t have matter to him.
Once they decided to be in a committed relationship, Karim argued that they shouldn’t use protection anymore. Sarita asked that they both get tested before they stopped using protection.
When they showed each other their tests, Karim refused to show Sarita his HIV test. He told her they told him they would call him if something was wrong. Sarita knew this was a red flag, but chose to ignore it.
She started taking birth control pills and had unprotected sex with Karim.
One day a coworker accused Karim of having a wife. He told Sarita that he had an ex who he almost married, but it never really happened. Sarita had been to his house, and it didn’t look like a woman lived there. Still, she had doubts in the back of her mind that he may be lying to her.
Karim met Sarita’s mom and kids but refused to let Sarita meet any of his family. He said that he didn’t want her to meet his family because they were still so attached to his ex.
She now knows that it wasn’t just a secret wife he was keeping from her, it was the fact that his mom knew Karim had HIV and he didn’t want his mother to disclose that to Sarita.
A deadly impression
One day Karim told Sarita something that she thought was romantic at the time, but now seems sinister. He told her he wanted to “leave an impression” on her so that even if they broke up he would always be with her.
Since she eventually contracted HIV from Karim, that was the permanent “impression” he left on her.
By May 2014, Sarita was already sick. She developed flu-like symptoms that wouldn’t go away, and Karim would go with her to the doctor.
Doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong with Sarita, but Karim wouldn’t say anything even though he knew. Sarita’s condition continued to worsen. She lose weight, she lost hair, and she started getting patches on her skin. All the time, Karim just watched her suffer.
Eventually, the doctor told her she had signs of HIV. Sarita thought that was silly because she had been tested the year before. She says Karim didn’t even flinch over the test.
While they waited on the results, they went home and searched for what kinds of cancer or diseases Sarita could possibly have. At this point Sarita was so sick that her life was in danger, but he still refused to give information that could save her life. Soon enough, she got so sick she had to be put in the ICU.
While in the hospital, they let her know that she had HIV. Her body was basically shutting down because of the effect of untreated HIV. At the time, she still didn’t know that Karim had intentionally given her HIV and assumed that he had cheated on her.
When Sarita confronted Karim, she asked him if he had cheated on her or lied about his test. This time he had no answers for her, so he started crying. She felt like his emotions were faked and she didn’t understand what happened.
Stages of grief
Sarita found it hard to cope with what had happened to her, so she took an overdose of insulin. Her mother saved her life by coming in her house when Sarita wouldn’t answer her door. She found Sarita on the floor and called an ambulance.
She woke up at the hospital and asked her mother why she had saved her. Her dad told her that she had a purpose in life. Soon afterward, Sarita found out she was pregnant.
Karim wanted Sarita to not keep the baby, but she decided to have the baby anyway. She was now on HIV treatment, and the drugs lessoned the chance of her passing HIV to her son. Thankfully, the baby was born without HIV.
The secrets come out
Eventually Sarita called Karim’s mom to let her know what had happened. His mom let her known that Karim was married. Karim had never sought treatment for his HIV. He had infected his wife with HIV, and potentially many other women.
Sarita found that her purpose in life was to prevent Karim from infecting more women. Her first action was to post her story on social media to warn people about Karim and people like him.
The next morning her phone exploded with notifications from people who had slept with Karim or who saw him posting on dating groups. She also got an anonymous message from someone from a clinic. They told her that they could lose their job for giving out this information, but they knew that Karim had tested positive in 2010 and had never come back for follow-up treatment.
Sarita was filled with anger over the fact that Karim intentionally gave her, and many others, HIV. She contemplated killing Karim, but soon hated the person she was becoming.
Sarita talked to a police officer who was also a colleague of hers at the hospital who informed her that it was illegal to knowingly infect someone with HIV. She decided this was her way to get back at Karim and protect other women from him. She immediately went to the police with all the information and witnesses she could find.
Unfortunately, none of the other women wanted to give statements to the police. Sarita didn’t give up, though. She wanted to bring justice to Karim. Within a few months, Karim was arrested. Authorities alerted Sarita that his arrest was coming, so she called him up and told him to enjoy his last moments of freedom. Karim had no idea what was headed his way that morning.
He pleaded guilty to aggravated assault of a family member causing serious bodily harm and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.
How many people did Karim infect?
Sarita knows of at least 12 women who got HIV from Karim, but she believes there were more.
She confronted him one last time while he was in jail. She asked him why he almost let her die since he knew he could have given HIV. He tried to argue that he didn’t want to kill her and didn’t think he had caused her illness. He claimed that he had not seen “anyone else” get sick, so he had no idea why she had gotten so sick.