Muslim teen's murder not hate crime, US police says

Announcement follows murder of 17-year-old female after altercation with motorist

Muslim teen's murder not hate crime, US police says

World Bulletin / News Desk

Police in this northern Virginia suburb of Washington DC, said Monday they will not investigate the murder of a Muslim teen as a hate crime.

Fairfax County Police believe road rage led to the fatal encounter this past weekend and are expected to brief the media later Monday.

The announcement follows the murder of a 17-year-old who was identified by officials as Nabra, without disclosing a last name.

Nabra was walking with friends early Sunday after leaving the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center mosque when they were confronted by a man in a car who got into a dispute with the girls, exited his vehicle and to assaulted the victim, police said in a statement.

Amid the chaos her friends could not locate her and police said they were called to assist.

Nabra went missing for 11 hours after the confrontation and a body was found around 3 p.m. local time (1700GMT) in a pond roughly two miles (3.2 kilometers) away.

Police identified the suspect as Darwin A. Martinez Torres, 22, of Sterling. He was taken into custody after police spotted a car “driving suspiciously” in the area.

Martinez Torres has been charged with murder.

The chief medical examiner will conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death and confirm the identity of the victim, although police said they believe the corpse to be that of the missing girl.

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

“We are devastated and heartbroken as our community undergoes and processes this traumatic event,” the ADAMS Center mosque said in a statement. “It is a time for us to come together to pray and care for our youth.”

Virginia Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam called the killing a “tragedy” inconsistent with the current Muslim holy month.

"Ramadan should be a season of peace. Instead, we mourn alongside our Muslim neighbors," he wrote on Twitter.

Area residents showed an outpouring of support for the Muslim community Monday by leaving flowers at the ADAMS Center in the wake of the tragedy.

Mark Lemmons, a 58-year-old resident of nearby Herndon, said he was warmly welcomed by the community when he delivered flowers for Nabra’s family.

“In the times we live in it’s easy for people to feel isolated,” he told Anadolu Agency. “I want to be one small part of letting them know that they have support in the larger community.”

Last Mod: 20 Haziran 2017, 02:15
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