A 22-year-old man is in custody after a Muslim teenager was found beaten to death in Virginia. According to the Fairfax County Police Department, Darwin Martinez Torres is facing murder charges in relation to the killing of Nabra, 17, in Herndon, Virginia, on June 18. Nabra had been the subject of a missing persons case early on June 18 with police saying that she was walking from a mosque with friends. Then, Allah had a verbal fight with a man in a car. That man is thought to have attacked and killed her. Torres was picked up by police shortly after Allah was first reported missing.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. A Facebook Post About Nabra’s Killing Said 2 Men Were Swinging Baseball Bats at a Group of Girls
Isra Chaker, who appears to know Nabra’s family, wrote a Facebook post that describes Nabra’s killing. Nabra and her friends were getting food while on break from praying at All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center in Herndon, Virginia, on June 17.
While going back to the center, Chaker says that Nabra and her friend were accosted by two men in a car. Chaker said:
A car pulled up, an altercation took place (the nature of which is still unknown) and then the man came out with a baseball bat swinging at the girls. Nabra was assaulted and was left behind. She then went missing (presumably kidnapped by the suspect) and was found dead this afternoon.
2. Authorities Have Not Said if They Are Investigating the Murder as a Hate Crime
There has been no confirmation that police are investigating the murder as a hate crime. The Washington Post reports that Nabra’s body was found in a pond in Sterling, Virginia. A baseball was recovered nearby.
Loudoun County Sheriff Michael Chapman told the media, “I can’t think of a worse instance to occur than the loss of a 17-year-old on Father’s Day, as the father of a 17-year-old myself.”
Human rights lawyer, Arsalan Iftikhar, told the Washington Post, “People are petrified, especially people who have young Muslim daughters.” Virginia Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam said, via the Post, “There is absolutely no place for this kind of violence in our Commonwealth. Every Virginian should feel safe and welcome in our communities, and no parent should ever have to experience such a heartbreaking tragedy. As the police investigation continues, I urge all Virginians to keep Nabra’s friends and family in their hearts.”
3. A Fundraising Page for Nabra’s Family Has Raised Over $25,000 in Less Than 24 Hours
A crowd funding page that was set up for Nabra’s family has raised over $25,000, at the time of writing. The page says:
This morning the ADAMS community in Sterling, VA lost 17 year old Nabra, in an apparent brutal murder during qiyam time.
Her body was found this afternoon and members of the ADAMS community are working together to raise money for her family in this time of need.
Investigation is still pending and donors are encouraged to follow news outlets as more details are released.
4. Torres Was Arrested After ‘Driving Suspiciously’ in the Area Around the Search
While Nabra was still considered a missing person, Torres was arrested after he was spotted “driving suspiciously” close to the search, reports NBC Washington.
5. This Comes on the Same Day That Multiple Muslims Were Injured in a Ramming Attack in London
Nabra’s body was found on the same day that nearly a dozen Muslims were injured in a ramming attack in London. The incident occurred close to a mosque in Finsbury Park, London. One person, described as a white male, has been arrested in relation to the attack. The Metropolitan Police Service said that they are treating the attack as a “major incident,” reports CNN.
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