Va. father questions motive for daughter’s murder

WASHINGTON — The father of a 17-year-old Muslim girl who was murdered in Virginia while walking with a group of friends to their mosque has a simple question: Why?

“Why he do that? Why he take my daughter life? We don’t know him, he don’t know us,” said Mohmoud Hassanen, of Reston, whose daughter Nabra was allegedly killed by Darwin Martinez Torres, 22, of Sterling.

In a news conference Monday evening, Fairfax County police said they believe Torres was motivated by road rage.

According to police, a group of up to 15 teens, including Hassanen, were walking and riding bicycles on Dranesville Road about 3:40 a.m. Sunday as they headed back from McDonalds to the ADAMS Center mosque, where they were taking part in an all-night sleepover event.

Police said Torres drove his car up to the group and got into an argument with the teenagers. He eventually got out of his car with a baseball bat and chased the group.

“He hit her with a baseball stick, for no reason. He hit my daughter, in her head,” said Hassanen.

Although police said there was no indication religious hatred was the motive for the crime, Mohmoud Hassanen wondered why the children, wearing traditional Muslim attire, were targeted.

“I want to stop the hating — hating for any reason,” Hassanen said.

“I lose my daughter. My daughter, she’s gone. She’s not coming back. I don’t want this happening to the other families,” he said.


Editor’s note: A previous version of this story had misspelled Mohmoud Hassanen’s name. The story has been corrected to reflect the change. 

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a general assignment reporter with WTOP since 1997. He says he looks forward to coming to work every day, even though that means waking up at 3:30 a.m.

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