An El Salvadoran national in the US illegally is suspected of murdering a 17-year-old Muslim girl in Virginia as she walked to a mosque.
Early Sunday, 17-year-old Nabra Hassanen and her friends were walking through Sterling towards a mosque for a Ramadan prayer service when they were confronted by a vehicle that pulled up.
“During the confrontation, the suspect, Darwin A. Martinez Torres, 22, of Sterling, Virginia, is believed to have gotten out of his vehicle to assault the victim, police said,” reported NBC News.
Hassanen’s friends fled to the mosque and reported her missing.
Following a brief search, police located Hassanen’s body in a pond at around 3PM Sunday.
“While searching, one officer saw a car driving suspiciously in the area and stopped it,” a Fairfax County Police Department press release states. “The driver, later identified as Martinez Torres, was taken into custody as a suspect.”
Hasannen’s mother says detectives told her Nabra had been struck with a metal bat. Detectives said they recovered the baseball bat, though they didn’t say where it was found.
The Washington Post reported Monday “Torres spoke through a Spanish translator to answer a judge’s questions.”
“Family members of Torres said he worked in construction. He has a four-year-old son and a girlfriend and is originally from El Salvador. He attended school briefly in the U.S.” reports the Post.
An Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesperson confirmed they’d issued an immigration detainer on Martinez Torres Monday.
“On June 19, ICE lodged a detainer on Darwin Martinez Torres, a citizen and national of El Salvador, with the Adult Detention Center in Fairfax, Virginia. ICE lodges detainers on aliens who have been arrested on local criminal charges when the agency has probable cause to believe an alien is removable from the United States. Mr. Martinez Torres has no prior encounters with ICE,” ICE’s statement read.
A Fairfax County police department public information officer would not reveal to Infowars details about Torres’ immigration status, though he did say they’d received numerous inquiries on the issue.
Police said the attack appeared “to be the result of a road rage incident.”
“Our investigation at this point does not indicate the victim was targeted because of her race or religion.”