The DC Memorial For A Murdered Muslim Teen Was Set On Fire

Posted June 26, 2017

Earlier this week, Fairfax County police arrested 22-year-old Darwin Martinex Torres for Hassanen's murder. He allegedly abducted Hassanen in the ensuing confusion, assaulted her with a baseball bat and dumped her body in the pond.

"If nobody gave you a compliment, she gave you a compliment", he said.

"I don't know when it's going to end", said Nor Ngaliman, 49, who came to the prayer service with her 18-year-old daughter Mariam Ahmed.

A vigil and prayer service Tuesday night at the impromptu memorial was followed by iftar - the daily meal after sunset to break the daily fast that many Muslims observe during the holy month of Ramadan.

For Elgengy, who is originally from Egypt and is also thinking about her own teenage daughter, she thinks it's possible that Hassanen's death is part of a bigger plan. "We are upset. Our children are not safe", she said.

"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.

Nabra Hassanen was brutally murdered early Sunday in a tragedy police have linked to road rage, but which has nonetheless prompted wider safety concerns among the area's Muslim community. The young graphic artist says Hassanen's slaying hit close to home.

"You can't just say, 'Oh, he didn't say anything against Islam, so no hate crime, '" said CAIR Spokesman Ibrahim Hooper.

"There is nothing to indicate at this point this tragic case was a hate crime", reads statement from the Fairfax County Police Department. Torres has been charged with murder in connection to the case.

Hassanen's father remains convinced her religion drew the attacker to her.

"In the general area, it's very somber [and] we're obviously upset - people are sad, some are scared, some are concerned", he said.

The chief acknowledged that many people still strongly feel that it must have been a hate crime. Police have not identified Hassanen, but her father confirmed she was the victim in Sunday's attack.

Martinez Torres and a teen on a bicycle got into a dispute and Martinez drove his auto up on the curb, scattering the teens, police said.

Nabra Hassenen was walking back to a Virginia mosque when she was assaulted and murdered by Darwin Martinez Torres. "And it wasn't just Muslim youth" but the broader Reston community that she was connected to, he said. In Virginia, neither police nor witnesses interviewed by The Associated Press said they saw anything to make them think the teenagers were targeted over their religion.

A GoFundMe is still raising money to cover the cost of Hassanen's funeral services.

Salis said her daughter and Hassanen played together in school.

Fairfax County officials say they do not believe the case will be treated as a federal hate crime, although they have not ruled out the possibility.