• Family says driver made obscene gestures, swerved into lane because of their religion

    By: Alyssa Hyman

    Updated:

    DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - DeKalb County detectives are investigating after a local family says a driver targeted them because of their religion. 

    The family captured part of the I-85 incident on cellphone video, They told Channel 2's Alyssa Hyman the two men were swerving into their lane and making obscene gestures only after making eye contact with the mom who was wearing a hijab.

    We've blurred the men's faces because they are not yet charged with a crime. 

    "What they're doing is just harassment. It's profanity," one of the family members told Hyman. They are so afraid, they have asked to remain anonymous.

    The Council on American Islamic Relations helped the family file a police report this week.

    "First of all we believe that this crime, incident, was absolutely sparked by anti-Muslim bias," said Murtaza Khwaja.


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    Khwaja is an attorney for the Council on American Islamic Relations (also known as CAIR). 

    "This isn't a typical road rage response. It's usually there's a triggering factor or triggering event. That wasn't the case here. There was just eye contact between a woman who was wearing a hijab and the two men on the left," he said.

    Khwaja said he believe at the very least the men should face aggressive driving charges or even possibly disorderly conduct. He believes in some states, it could be considered a hate crime, but not in Georgia because the law doesn't exist. 

    "This is where our state legislature really needs to look at putting forth a really comprehensive hate crimes bill that doesn't disproportionately affect minorities or vulnerable communities as it has in other states," he said.

    DeKalb County police wouldn't comment on this case because this is an ongoing investigation.

    CAIR says the organization as a whole has seen in uptick in these types of cases.

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