A grand jury has indicted 22-year-old Darwin Martinez Torres on eight counts, including murder and rape, in the abduction and death of 17-year-old Nabra Hassenen. Fairfax County prosecutors are seeking the death penalty, the Washington Post reports.
The murder attracted national attention, and many who showed up wearing “Justice for Nabra” outside the courthouse on Monday maintained that Hassanen’s murder was a hate crime. Police have classified the murder as road rage.
Hassanen’s body was found in a pond on June 18, hours after she visited friends at an IHOP with friends who were observing the Muslim holiday Ramadan. Torres, who was driving, got into a fight with one of the teens who was on a bike. He then chased them, got out of the car, and attacked the group with a baseball bat late at night.
According to a search warrant, one of the teens in the group looked back to see that Hassanen was on the ground and Torres was standing over her. According to law enforcement, Torres hit Hassanen, put her in his car, drove off and later on sexually assaulted her. He dumped her body in a pond near his apartment, and later admitted his crime to police.
A judge will set Torres’s trial date on Thursday.