Police: Argument with bike rider is what led to Herndon teen’s death

hassanen photoNabra Hassanen (Photo via Facebook)

Fairfax County police say it was road rage that ended in the death of 17-year old Nabra Hassanen of Reston in the early morning hours of Sunday.

Detectives put it all together this way:

About 3:40 a.m. on Sunday, a group of about 15 teenagers were walking and riding bikes on Dranesville Road  in Herndon. The group had been attending an overnight Ramadan event at the All Dulles Area Muslim Society and had left to go to a fast food restaurant. As they were returning to the mosque, some were on the sidewalk and others were on the road itself.  Detectives believe 22-year old Darwin Martinez Torres, of Sterling, came upon the teens while he was driving. At some point a teen-aged boy in the group who was riding a bike began arguing with Torres. Torres then drove his car onto the curb as the group scattered.

Witnesses say Torres caught up with the group a short time later in a nearby parking lot, got out of his car armed with a baseball bat and began chasing the group. Torres was able to catch Nabra and hit her with the bat. Detectives say Torres then took Nabra with him in his car to a second location nearby in Loudoun County.

Patrol officers were notified of the incident and began to investigate. Torres later was taken into custody at about 5:15 a.m. Sunday by a Fairfax County patrol officer who spotted what he believed to be the car that was involved in the incident. FCPD Underwater Search and Recovery Unit members recovered Nabra’s body from a pond in Loudoun County Sunday evening. Torres has been charged with her murder.

Police say there is nothing to indicate, at this point, that this was a hate crime. They say that no evidence has been uncovered that shows the murder was motivated by race or religion. Detectives are continuing to investigate and say that if they discover information or evidence that would indicate this was hate-motivated they’ll file additional charges.

Hassanen and the other teens had been fasting because of Ramadan, which runs through June 24 this year. During Ramadan, Muslims fast from dawn until dusk, and the teens had gone to a nearby pancake restaurant to break their fast prior to the incident.



About the Author

Ed Tobias
Ed Tobias brings more than four decades of reporting and news management experience to his work at FairfaxNews. Tobias managed news coverage for Associated Press Radio for over twenty years.  This included coverage of the 9/11 attacks, the Iraq War, Hurricane Katrina, the death of Princess Diana, the Challenger and Columbia shuttle disasters and national election primaries, conventions and campaigns.  He was part of the team that built AP’s on-line video operation. Prior to joining AP, Tobias was News Director at all-news WTOP in Washington, D.C. He has won two Ohio State Awards for his reporting and producing and he led coverage that won an Edward R. Murrow Award.