Man Accused of Murder of Muslim Girl Not Charged for Hate Crime

A teenage Muslim girl killed by a bat-wielding motorist near a Virginia mosque was an apparent victim of "road rage" and her death is not being investigated as a hate crime, police said on Monday. The others ran inside the mosque but Hassanen tripped, Hassanen's mother Sawsan Gazzar said a detective told her. Torres allegedly struck Hassanen with a metal bat. A possible hate-crime motivation is among the things authorities are investigating, police said.

A "tragic case of road rage" is how police are describing the murder of a Muslim teenager in Fairfax County.

"While the incident has yet to be labeled a hate crime, right now in America, black Muslim women, especially those from marginalized communities are continuously targeted and attacked with malicious intent".

"What investigators told the father and the mother, he hit her in the head and put her in the auto and he threw her in the water", said family friend and spokesperson Abas Sherif.

They say she was part of a large group of teenagers walking back on Dranesville Road, toward the All Dulles Area Muslim Society, from McDonald's at about 3:40 a.m. Sunday when the altercation began.

The attack occurred during the waning days of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, when observant Muslims fast from dawn to sunset. "Nothing suggests that this girl or the group was targeted because of who they are or what they believe", said Wright.

At about 04:00 (08:00 GMT), the group was confronted by the driver as they walked on a street.

Martinez Torres drove onto a curb and the group scattered, Parker said. The group of more than a dozen kids did not immediately realize Hassanen was missing.

Police have yet to officially identify the victim while they await the examiner to positively identify the body.

Police questioned 22-year-old Darwin A. Martinez Torres while searching for Hassanen because he was driving suspiciously in the area.

Police found Hassanen's body Sunday afternoon in a pond on the 21500 block of Ridgetop Circle in Sterling about 3 p.m.

Martinez Torres of Sterling was arraigned Monday in Fairfax County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court and ordered held without bail pending a July 19 court appearance. A judge appointed him a public defender, whose office declined comment.

A spokesperson for US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) told the outlet on Monday that it had lodged a detainer request against him following his arrest.

Aboras immigrated from southern Egypt and has three younger daughters, who like Nabra were born in the U.S. He's not particularly interested in knowing why his daughter was attacked or whether it could be considered a hate crime.

He added: "When I go to court I'm going to look him in the eye: 'Why did you do this to my daughter?' Then I'm going to forgive him and leave him to God's face".

"My daughter is dead, and I don't want anyone to feel what I feel, to lose your 17-year-old daughter ..."

  • Joanne Flowers