Parents of slain teen Nabra Hassanen believe motive was hatred of Muslims

Three months ago, Nabra Hassanen, a young Muslim girl, was beaten to death.

RESTON, VA (WUSA9) - It's a local case that sent shock waves across the country.
 
Three months ago, Nabra Hassanen, a young Muslim girl, was beaten to death. Her body dumped in a Sterling, Va. pond.
 
Now we know the suspect charged with killing her had a history of violence and aggression at two Loudoun County high schools, according to just-unsealed court records. 
 
Search warrants also reveal  that Martinez Torres told police he picked up Nabra's body, put her in his car, and drove her to the leak near his home in Sterling and dumped the body in the water.   

The Medical Examiner determined Nabra died of  blunt force trauma to the head.  

RELATED: Sex assault could elevate Nabra Hassanen case to death penatly

But what was the motivation for the killing? Nabra's parents believe, as they have since the incident, that the suspect was motivated by hatred of Muslims.  

Even though police say the murder was not a hate crime, her parents believe the suspect, Darwin Antonio Martinez Torres, 22, went after a whole group of Muslim teenagers because he knew they were Muslim. The girls, including their daughter, were all wearing headscarves. 

"Because she is Muslim. It's what I believe with all my heart," said Nabra father Mohmud Hassenen with the girl's mother, Sawsan Gazzar, chiming in with agreement.

Nabra, 16, was attacked around 3:30 in the morning on June 18 as she and a group of friends were heading back to the All Dulles Area Muslim Society mosque in Sterling for early morning Ramadan services. 

Police say the attack was motivated by “road rage.”  

Some boys from the group told WUSA9 that as Martinez Torres drove by the group, he got in a verbal dispute with some of the boys. The suspect then chased the group in his car, driving up on a sidewalk, then got out of his Pontiac and chased them on foot, eventually chasing down Hassanen.   

Boys who were in the group told WUSA9 that when the kids ran, Nabra was left behind. Court documents say one teenager looked back and saw Nabra lying on the sidewalk with a Hispanic male standing over her with a baseball bat.   

"If one boy fight him, why he don't run behind this boy? Why he run behind the girl? Maybe because it's a Muslim girl. All of them had the head scarf, the hijab," said Mohmud Hassenen.   

The Hassanens say they think about their daughter constantly and have difficulty answering their 4-year-old child when she asks when Nabra is coming home. The parents cried telling that story and the pain they feel every day from Nabra's loss.   

His new license plate that reads "Nabra" is a comfort. 

"I love my daughter with all my heart. She's in my mind already, but not when I see her name too," he shrugs and holds back tears. 

"I just don't want anyone else to have to go through this," pleaded Mahmoud Hassenen.   

He questioned why Martinez Torres, an undocumented immigrant with a violent history, was not deported.   

Torres has a hearing coming up on October 13th. The Hassanens said dozens of people are coming to court that day to support and remember Nabra. 

Court documents also show that Martinez Torres told police he picked up Nabra's body, put her in his car, and drove her to the leak near his home in Sterling and dumped the body in the water.   

The Medical Examiner determined Nabra died of blunt force trauma to the head.  

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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