While shopping at TJ Maxx with his family, an Egyptian man began recording a female customer who caught his attention. The Muslim man demanded that the NYPD investigate the “crazy Trump supporter” for a hate crime, but he was less than thrilled with their response.
Mido Mourad, a 41-year Egyptian journalist, was shopping with his wife at a TJ Maxx in Brooklyn when he claims that a “white” woman approached the couple and unleashed a racist rant. According to the Muslim shopper, the woman, who he claims is a “crazy Trump supporter,” came up to him and his wife and shouted “Go back to your country!” and walked away.
Mourad told the media that he was standing at the checkout counter when the alleged incident occurred, the New York Post reports. Police were called to the scene. Once officers arrived, they quickly realized they had their work cut out for them.
Mourad apparently exited the store and began recording with his cell phone, waiting for the woman to come outside. As she nears the door, she can be heard saying, “Stop taking pictures,” before slapping at his cell phone. As she walks away, she tells him, “Get out of my face or I’ll f— you up.”
“After we grabbed our items, we stood near the register to decide if we were ready to check out. At this point, the white lady in the video, started cursing at my wife and I. My wife wears a hijab,” Mourad said in a statement shared by the Council on American-Islamic Relations. “This lady became more and more aggressive and we started to worry that she was going to harm us. As we started to walk away, she yelled at us to ‘GO BACK TO YOUR COUNTRY!’ We were shocked and shaken.”
Mourad quickly uploaded his recording of the brief encounter with the unidentified woman to social media, making a slew of accusations. He also fumed over TJ Maxx suggesting that the incident was a dispute “between two customers” and claimed that the business “prioritized helping this racist over us,” according to BKLYNER.
“We are committed to fostering an environment in our stores in which everyone is treated with dignity and respect, and do not condone any disruptive or otherwise aggressive behavior,” the spokesperson said. “We are sorry to learn that this situation occurred between two customers and are looking into this matter further.”
Mourad called the New York Police Department and showed officers the video, demanding that they charge the woman with a hate crime, which often carries a prison sentence. Unfortunately for him, the NYPD’s reply wasn’t at all what he wanted to hear.
When police arrived, Mourad claimed they told him the incident wasn’t a hate crime “but only a violation.” He said he filed a harassment complaint with the NYPD — but is urging them to probe it as a hate crime.
Despite no witnesses coming forward to the public to corroborate his accusations, Mourad insists that he is the victim of a hate crime. At the most, however, police have argued that there may have been a case of harassment when the woman slapped his phone away and shouted obscenities toward him.
Since police rejected Mourad’s claims, as they only have his word to go on, the journalist went straight to those he knew would take his story as fact — the media and the Council of American-Islamic Relations. Almost immediately, the media began reporting Mourad’s unfounded allegations as if there was evidence to support them.
Some outlets even propagated the unidentified woman’s political affiliation as right-wing, which they later admit was based solely on Mourad’s own accusation. Within days, even politicians began regurgitating his claims without any evidence.
Assemblymember Mathylde Frontus said that she was “stunned and angry” by the incident. “How dare anyone tell a family with children to go back to their country as if they don’t belong here,” she said. State Senator Andrew Gounardes, said the incident was “not who we are and certainly not who we are going to become. Shame on this woman.”
The NYPD has been pressured by Mourad and his supporters to bring a hate crime charge against the woman. However, the department has only stated that the Hate Crimes Task Force was already aware of his claims and is “looking into the incident.”
If the Muslim couple was truly worried “that she was going to harm” them during the checkout encounter, it’s puzzling that they decided to wait by the exit to come face to face with the “crazy Trump supporter” as she was trying to leave. It’s almost as if the Muslim man was trying to provoke an angry response. If that’s the case, he certainly got what he wanted.