Muslim woman reportedly attacked on airplane at Detroit Metro Airport

Civil rights group pushes for suspect to be charged with hate crime

A Spirit Airlines airplane (WDIV)
A Spirit Airlines airplane (WDIV)

ROMULUS, Mich. – The Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations is urging Wayne County officials to charge a woman who reportedly assaulted a Muslim woman Saturday on a Spirit Airlines flight.

According to CAIR, Aicha Toure was traveling from Atlanta to Detroit when a white woman, whom she did not know, boarded the plane acting belligerently. The woman allegedly initiated altercations with minority crew members.

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CAIR described Toure as a “visibly Muslim woman who wears an Islamic head scarf.”

CAIR said when the plane landed in Detroit, the woman began harassing an older woman who appeared to be of South Asian descent. When Toure asked the woman to stop cursing at the older woman, the woman allegedly lashed out at Toure and called her a “Muslim Terrorist.”

When the white woman realized Toure and others were recording her, CAIR said she reportedly struck Toure with her fist before crew members were able to intervene. The alleged assailant was arrested.

“The alleged actions of this individual are reprehensible and she clearly targeted religious and racial minorities for her violent words and actions,” said attorney Amy V. Doukoure. “Michigan’s Ethnic intimidation law was created to protect people like Ms. Toure from being assaulted after being called a Muslim terrorist while traveling on the 20th anniversary of 9/11. It is imperative that Wayne County Prosecutor’s office take this hate crime seriously and ensure that Muslims are safe from hate and violence in all aspects of their life.”

According to the Wayne County Airport Authority Police Department, the woman was cited for assault and disorderly conduct.

Spirit Airlines released the following statement regarding the incident:

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Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.