Tags: North Carolina | Muslims murdered | FBI | investigation

FBI Examining Slaying of Muslims After Hate Crime Claim

Friday, 13 Feb 2015 11:03 AM

The FBI has launched a "preliminary inquiry" into the murders of three Muslim students near the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Police say that the killings were carried out by Craig Stephen Hicks in an argument over a parking space. But the state’s Muslim community is calling it a hate crime, according to NBC News.

Deah Barakat, 23, a dentistry student at the university, his wife Yusor Abu-Salha, 21, and her 19-year-old sister, Razan Abu-Salha were shot to death.

Their family members claim that the victims had run-ins previously with 46-year-old Hicks, sometimes while wearing a handgun on his hip.

Hicks, who had anti-religious views, has been charged with three counts of first-degree murder. His wife has denied that it was a bias attack and that he hated Muslims, NBC News stated.

Chapel Hill Police Chief Chris Blue said that the investigation does not suggest bias in the killings, saying that Hicks was "motivated by an ongoing neighbor dispute over parking."

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a nationwide Muslim advocacy group which had called for an investigation into a possible race hate crime, welcomed the FBI inquiry.

"This case is quickly becoming a touchstone for the American Muslim community's sense of security and inclusion," the group said in a statement.

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The FBI has launched a "preliminary inquiry" into the murders of three Muslim students near the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
North Carolina, Muslims murdered, FBI, investigation
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2015-03-13
Friday, 13 Feb 2015 11:03 AM
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