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Seattle: Anti-Muslim bigot beat Sikh cab driver

29 October 2012 General 5 Comments Email This Post Email This Post
Prosecutors confirmed that the racist attack were not only hateful but based on his misperception of the driver’s heritage.

Prosecutors confirmed that the racist attack were not only hateful but based on his misperception of the driver’s heritage.

By LEVI PULKKINEN, SEATTLEPI.COM STAFF

A Federal Way man accused of viciously beating a Sikh cab driver while shouting anti-Muslim slurs now faces a hate crime charge.

King County prosecutors contend Jamie W. Larson attacked the cab driver during an Oct. 17 ride after commenting on the man’s turban.  According to charging documents, Larson, 48, tore out chunks of the man’s beard during the assault, which also loosened one of the driver’s teeth.

“Two witnesses saw the attack which was described as savage, and the defendant continued his tirade after officers arrived,” Deputy Prosecutor Gretchen Holmgren told the court, noting that the cab driver was taken to a hospital following the 4:30 p.m. attack.

The afternoon attack came after Auburn police called a cab to pick up Larson, who was apparently too intoxicated to drive or walk.

According to charging documents, the STITA Taxi driver arrived at the Auburn police station to retrieve Larson. During the drive to Larson’s Federal Way home, Larson began questioning the driver about his turban.

Larson then attacked the driver while making anti-Muslim comments, a Federal Way detective told the court. The driver was able to stop the car in the 1200 block of Southwest 301st Street, where police found him injured and Larson attempting to return to the parked taxi.

During the attack, Larson pulled out parts of the driver’s beard and punched him repeatedly, according to charging documents. Police report the attack left the driver dazed and with a loose tooth.

Even after police arrived, Larson continued making bigoted comments about the driver, an immigrant from India. According to police, Larson referred to him derisively as Iranian and Iraqi, and used several anti-Arab slurs before also using an anti-gay slur.

“We have Americans fighting overseas in his country and why doesn’t he go back to there?” Larson allegedly asked officers at the scene.

Writing the court, the Federal Way detective noted Larson’s comments were not only hateful but based on his misperception of the driver’s heritage.

“Officers noted that (the driver), a follower of the Sikhism religion, wore a turban headdress, kirpana, kara and a Kanga; items that symbolize (his) religion,” the detective told the court.

Larson was arrested at the scene and has since been charged with malicious harassment under Washington’s hate crime statute. He remains jailed on $60,000 bail.

Check the Seattle 911 crime blog for more Seattle crime news. Visit seattlepi.com‘s home page for more Seattle news.

Levi Pulkkinen can be reached at 206-448-8348 or levipulkkinen@seattlepi.com. Follow Levi on Twitter at twitter.com/levipulk.

Original post: Police: Anti-Muslim bigot beat Sikh cab driver

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5 Comments »

  1. This seems to be a case of someone who was not in his right mind, not in control of his thoughts.This is no excuse for his behavior.The only beating i am in favour of is if you are going to beat them with love.people all over are angry and they are very easily provoked.it seem that the turban in this case is what his energy was focuced on.Did he believe a bomb was in the turban?We must love them and show them respect.I believe that Muslims minus Islam are some nice people.Islam means to submit and when they submit they become slaves,when they had the day of demmonstration in Pakistan they said “we are slaves of muhammed”It is very dificult to seperate islam from Muslims ,if it is possible you will not have anymore bias towards muslims .

  2. Some muslims jus like some christian or believers of another faith are the problem not islam..no one is a slave of another in islam.its traditions mixed with utter ignorance makin ppl utter(if at all they did) such blasphemy.
    Get ur facts ryt!! Wasnt hitler a christian jus like osama a muslim?? I dnt see u blaming christianity for the holocust!!

  3. @carlton batson. Yes, it seems the alcohol took control of this man’s forked tongue and behavior. I think the PD should share in some of the culpability. Why didn’t they take the man home themselves? They could have charged him for their time, just as they may have covered the cab fare.

    In regard to your addl remarks: ‘Islam means to submit’. It means more than this. The root of the word is derived from the same Arabic root that connotes ‘peace/salaam. Put them together and one definition is the person gains/develops/learns: peace, contentment, satisfaction, mercy, love, learning to bend their free will to what their Creator wants them to do eg: control their anger, be charitable, patient, stay away from the elements that remove self-control such as alcohol, drugs, gambling; control sexual urges, appetite, spending, and continually learn.

    So when muslims state: we are a ‘slave of Allah/Muhammed’ this is a term of honor. The Arabic of the Quran is majestic. Translators have to choose one word to convey an interpretation, otherwise, translated books would be about 9 ft tall. Slave has a negative connotation in English. But this Arabic term indicates you are one who totally follows the directions, commands, requests, spirit of the law, and is fully in tune with their Lord. A tall order, a big claim, one that no one should ever boast about as they will be held accountable for it.

    Muslims are imperfect, just like Christians are, as are Jews, Mormons, Baptists. But God in His Majesty is Perfect. We humans are individuals. We represent just ourselves. No one person, for good or for bad, can speak or represent millions/billion others.

    Peace to you.

  4. Carlton

    So can you tell me exactly what is wrong according to you in submission and in being a slave of the Lord and his messenger (Peace Be Upon Him).

    if you employ a person then what do you expect from him ? that he obeys your orders and fulfill what you ask him to do or would you prefer someone who doesn’t obey and ask WHY SHOULD I DO THIS? I WON’T DO THIS every time you ask him to do something?

    Yes Muslim’s are slaves of God Almighty and we strive to be better slaves in our submission to the command of God Almighty and we take pride in that.

    //Syed

  5. […] comments. A mosque was burned to the ground in Joplin, MO this past summer. Just recently, a Sikh man was attacked in Seattle as a man viciously shouted anti-Muslim slurs at him. And again, AFDI has spent large […]

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