Police in Fairfax, Virginia on Sunday found remains of what they believed to be of a 17-year-old Muslim girl, who was reported missing early on Sunday after she left a mosque with a group of friends. The authorities believed she was assaulted and murdered after leaving a mosque in the Sterling area in Virginia. Her body was found in a pond in the 21500 block of Ridgetop Circle in Sterling, Virginia.
The police charged a 22-year-old man in connection to the murder. The teenage girl was identified as Nabra by the mosque officials and officers arrested Darwin Martinez Torres as a suspect in the case.
Mosque officials spoke of an earlier incident where Nabra and her friends were returning after eating during a break from Ramadan prayers, when a car pulled up in front of them and a man jumped out of it carrying a baseball bat. He then started swinging the bat towards the group of girls.
Some of Nabra’s friends reported she was missing and told the police of the earlier dispute with the man carrying the baseball bat. Police and mosque officials mentioned the group of girls were walking on Dranesville Road towards the All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) Center in Sterling, Virginia, around 3:30 a.m. EDT, while returning after breakfast at a nearby town center.
Investigation was underway and while the teens were all Muslims, police said the detectives had “not gotten any indication that this was motivated by hate or bias.”
Police started searching for Nabra about 4 a.m. EDT on Sunday in and around the area of Dranesville Road and Woodson Drive in Herndon in Sterling, Fairfax County Officer Tawny Wright confirmed in a news conference Sunday evening.
The mosque said in a statement Sunday night some of the residents nearby had also come across a group of friends and had told them the way to the ADAMS center.
“Immediately thereafter, the ADAMS' personnel notified both Loudon County and Fairfax County authorities who immediately began an extensive search to locate the missing girl,” the statement said.
While searching for Nabra on Sunday, a police officer saw a car driving suspiciously near the area and immediately pulled the driver over. Following this, Torres was taken into custody in connection to the case.
Police said a baseball bat was also found, as described by the friends of the girl and the mosque officials.
“We call on law enforcement to investigate and determine the motive of this crime and prosecute to the full extent of the law,” the ADAMS Center statement said.
The identity of the remains has not been confirmed yet, the medical examiner’s office is expected to carry out tests.
“I just can't think of a worse instance to occur with the loss of a 17-year-old on Father's Day. As a father of a 17-year-old myself, I can't think of anything worse than confronting that on this particular day,” Loudoun County Sheriff Michael Chapman said at a news conference on Sunday evening.
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring released a statement Saturday night: “The ADAMS Center has always welcomed me and so many in Northern Virginia like family. This unspeakable attack feels like an assault on our entire community. Words fail at a time like this, so we'll all have to do the best we can to surround them with the love and support they've always shown each of us.”