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FCPD Will Lead Investigation of Nabra Hassanen’s Death; Muslim Community Still Has Questions

by Dave Emke — June 21, 2017 at 2:45 pm 21 Comments

Homicide detectives from the Fairfax County Police Department will continue to lead the investigation into the death of 17-year-old Nabra Hassanen of Reston.

Jurisdictional issues have arisen since the crime, which took place just before 4 a.m. Sunday. Police say Nabra was assaulted and abducted near the intersection of Dranesville Road and Woodson Drive, which is just east of the Fairfax/Loudoun county line. Police say she was then taken to Loudoun County, where she was assaulted again and her body was thrown into a pond.

According to police accounts, Nabra and a group of friends had been at a Ramadan service at the All Dulles Area Muslim Society and were on their way back after going to breakfast at the McDonald’s in the Town Center at Sterling plaza. Both of those places are just west of the Fairfax/Loudoun line.

“The Fairfax County Police Department has partnered closely with the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office with the common goal of justice for Nabra as well as for her family, friends and community,” FCPD said in a news release. “Our department will continue to work alongside the Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney as this case moves forward.”

Police have charged 22-year-old Darwin Martinez Torres, a Salvadoran national, with murder in the case. They say Torres became enraged with the group of teens and exited his car wielding a baseball bat, striking Nabra. An autopsy revealed her cause of death as blunt force trauma.

Nabra was finishing her sophomore year at South Lakes High School.

Police say they are not investigating Nabra’s death as a hate crime; however, Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Raymond Morrogh has said he will continue to weigh the possibility before deciding how to proceed with the case. Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Plowman says he supports the decision to keep the case in Fairfax County and “will lend any assistance if requested.”

Just before a funeral service for Nabra got underway Wednesday afternoon at the ADAMS Center, some members of the area’s Muslim community made their anger about the crime known.

“It’s disgusting, the fact that this is being investigated as a road-rage incident as opposed to being a hate crime,” said Baidan Ali, 20, of Annandale. “She was black, she was a Muslim, she was a female. It’s disgusting and there’s nothing really left to say about it. It’s sad that we can’t express our religion freely without having to worry about incidents like this happening.”

Omar Ghowrwal, of Ashburn, said he is confident police will investigate the case thoroughly and get to the bottom of what led to Nabra’s death.

“In the general area, it’s very somber [and] we’re obviously upset — people are sad, some are scared, some are concerned,” he said. “I think most of us, though, we just want to see justice meted out and we hope that happens.”

FCPD says it is working closely with the Muslim community to assure them that they have police support and justice will be served.

“We know this is an incredibly difficult time, especially for our Muslim community,” FCPD said in the release. “Chief Edwin C. Roessler Jr. met [Tuesday] with leaders from the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS Center) including Imam Mohamed Magid and Chaplain Joshua Salaam. The Chief assured them we will continue to diligently investigate the case and provide our support. We have a long-standing relationship with the ADAMS Center, and our hearts go out to everyone in our Muslim community and beyond for this tragic crime.”

Hurunnessa Fariad, media representative for the ADAMS Center, said people are still trying to wrap their heads around what happened, and counselors are being made available for anyone who needs emotional support. She also said ADAMS is talking with law enforcement as they work toward investigating the case to its fullest extent.

“We want every possible motive there is to be brought on the table, even if there is [only a] 0.5 percent chance that it’s a hate crime — we want it on the table,” Fariad said. “We’re confident that they are doing the best they can to make sure they don’t leave any stones unturned.”

The funeral service can be viewed in its entirety on the ADAMS Center’s Facebook page. A vigil to celebrate Nabra’s life is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. tonight at Lake Anne Plaza.

  • Mike M

    “She was black, she was a Muslim, she was a female.” Nothing about the victim’s race, religion, or gender makes it a hate crime. It is, in fact racist to make this presumption.

    Are “hate crimes” only for non-white victims? Would a “polar bear hunting” attack be a hate crime. If a white person is assaulted in a non-white neighborhood would it be a hate crime.

    The reality is that hate crimes are brainwash for Liberal trying to separate people. it is astonishing to me how many people have bought in. Under the US Constitution, you cannot punish people for what they think, only what they do. Murder is the crime here. And it is to the credit of the police that they didn’t give in to leftist politics in their investigation and prosecution.

    • Evidently

      Frankly, I don’t think much of that group of kids, several guys, who abandoned their friend to face this evildoer on her own, and left her there, vulnerable. If any of my kids did such a thing, they’d never live it down.

      • Priscila Di Galvanini

        I agree with you.why would 15 boys and girls abandon their friend behind? Why isn’t police investigating these kids on why they did that and what exactly happened in details? I also agree there in no way should they have been allowed to wonder unchaperonned.

    • Conservative Senior

      They are children & should have been supervised by someone at the mosque.
      To allow them to take off on their own in the middle of the night for food is irresponsible by who ever was in charge. This was not hate crime! It was an illegal lunatic. My prayers to the parents.

      • The Constitutionalist

        Were you locked away at 17, never allowed to leave your parents’ sight for any reason?

        • josco

          If I were at a church event, there would absolutely be supervision…at 4 am. It’s insane not to hold mosque responsible. Unless the story isn’t true, which is likely.

          • The Constitutionalist

            It’s insane to keep shifting the blame.

            There’s only one person here to hold responsible and that’s the illegal who bludgeoned her to death.

      • meh

        I want to know why this girl was out at night without a male chaperone. I thought that’s their jam. Cover up for modesty and the like

    • Off_He_Goes

      There is young man who will have to live with the guilt that his actions cost the life of an innocent young woman.

      • Mike M

        Given where we are, we can hope so. But he may be incapable of guilt. Frankly, I wish he were still in El Salvador.

        • Off_He_Goes

          Oh yeah, well him too, but I was referring to the guy on the bike that may have been a part of the initial issue that set the events in motion. He has to live with the fact that he started something with an unknown individual in a car and as a result a girl is dead.

          • Mike M

            Oh! Good point. Well he may be one the Golden P types who has been raised to think he is the center of the universe, and now he is in the States, where he thinks he can and should mouth off to anyone even when he is in the wrong. Most Americans don’t get that aspect of some of these cultures. Yeah, I’d like to know what he was doing to trigger and when the monster came out after his friends. I have no use for the many Golden P-types we have imported. They are slimy humans.

    • josco

      I’m with you on this.

      There were 5 or so different accounts the first night, when MSM was busy proclaiming it a HATE CRIME!! They didn’t care about facts because they were so excited that finally they’d found Islamophobia. Naturally those so inclined, including her parents, jumped on that.
      Is the account entirely based on the 15 kids who abandoned her so readily? How did they know, then, about “tripping on abaya”?
      I think her mom came up with that.
      She was raped? After being clubbed on head with bat? And then clubbed some more?
      Maybe. But seems odd.

      The story contains too many questions; has the look of a coverup. Hard to get facts when media is lusting after their elusive Islamophobia connection.

  • TheKingJAK

    What is with the absolute obsession over trying to classify the murder as being related to religion? The ulterior motives are stunningly clear. Let the girl rest in peace, and stop trying to turn her into to a martyr. Her family has been through enough grief already, and everybody using them as pawns in this political game is sick in the head.

    • josco

      They’re claiming Islamophobic hate crime. Each parent did separately. That’s why. Otherwise I’d agree. They’re not showing any personal responsibility for their daughter being out at 4 am w/out supervision nor is mosque.
      And mostly I’m angry at MSM fluffing up another fake hate crime. I have a special hatred for this. It’s dangerous.
      Let’s counter it with facts.

  • Sidewinder

    They WALKED to a McDonalds at 4AM from a Mosque pretty far away and they are 14 YEARS OLD? Where are the adult Moslems to drive them down there in a SUV or something? There’s more to this story we’re not hearing.

    • The Constitutionalist

      Thought she was 17…

    • Off_He_Goes

      The distance is less than one mile, about 15 minutes by foot, between mosque and McDonald’s with a sidewalk. And yes while some try to spin this as her being targeted for her religion, I believe that the verbal altercation between the male on the bike and the perpetrator are what ultimately got her killed.

      • josco

        and raped?

        Definitely more to the story. Also, it started at IHOP. With 4 kids. Then McDonalds with 15.

        Mosque should be held responsible. A church certainly would be.

  • Damon Feldman

    Mostly unfortunate comments, and embarrassing to all of us who live here.

    A young woman was assaulted and killed. The Restonians commenting so far, none of whom I am sure went to the services to hear from friends and family or get informed, are bending over backwards to fit this into their anti-Islamic or anti-immigrant politics.

    I hope the poor girl’s family and friends are not reading this.

    • Guest

      100% spot on.

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