Muslim woman wins $85k lawsuit after police remove her hijab

Powell filed the lawsuit in April 2016, alleging the police department had violated her First Amendment rights. Powell was "forced to appear in a publicly available booking photo without her religious headwear," the lawsuit said.

By: PTI | Los Angeles | Published:August 12, 2017 6:37 pm
hijab, muslim hijab, muslim woman wins lawsuit, US hijab case, world news, indian express news Picture for representational purpose

A Muslim woman in the US, who was forced to remove her hijab when she was in police custody has been awarded $85,000 as settlement by authorities. The incident happened last year when Kirsty Powell and her husband were pulled over by police for driving a “low rider” car, according to the lawsuit.

Powell was arrested after police found a warrant under her name for a shoplifting incident, the CNN reported. Powell’s husband requested a female officer handle the arrest, but the arresting officers denied the request and told Powell that she had to remove her hijab. Powell spent the night in prison without her headscarf. It was returned when her husband posted her bond, the report said.

Powell filed the lawsuit in April 2016, alleging the police department had violated her First Amendment rights. Powell was “forced to appear in a publicly available booking photo without her religious headwear,” the lawsuit said. As a result of the foregoing deprivations of the free exercise of her religion, Kirsty Powell suffered severe discomfort, humiliation, and emotional distress,” it said. “She cried throughout the ordeal and experienced humiliation when both her religious beliefs and personal integrity were violated,” the lawsuit said.

The city of Long Beach, California, will pay $85,000 to settle the lawsuit filed by Powell. The Council on American-Islamic Relations announced the settlement and praised Powell.

Powell had told the Council on American-Islamic Relations when she filed the suit she wanted to be the last Muslim woman who has this experience. “I want my Muslim sisters to always feel comfortable and safe wearing a hijab and to stand up for what’s right,” she said.

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  1. S
    Shyamal Ganguly
    Aug 13, 2017 at 8:11 pm
    Next they will say that "oath of allegiance to the flag " is against ISLAM.
    1. S
      Aug 14, 2017 at 3:37 pm
      A Muslim Citizen of a Nation does not need to take Oath of allegiance , His religion preaches Him to be loyal subject of that Nation.All Religion even Sanatann Dharma does not believes in Bharat being a Goddess and Bows to it. It is only the Pagans who does that , singing to Mother Goddess.
    2. S
      Shyamal Ganguly
      Aug 13, 2017 at 8:10 pm
      Next we will see that America will go the way of France. No Hijab in Government offices and public places.
      1. A
        Aug 12, 2017 at 11:09 pm
        Its high time that the stone-age religion called islam be banned from this world. There should be no delay in this, or honest police and depts will continue to be punished !
        1. S
          Aug 14, 2017 at 3:39 pm
          If you cover your body you are stone-aged, if you bare it all, it is modern.Wake up Saffron, Stone aged Pagan People never used clothes, doing same till date.
        2. V
          V Pramod
          Aug 12, 2017 at 8:00 pm
          The erring cops should also be strictly punished for humiliating a woman.
          1. C
            Aug 12, 2017 at 7:13 pm
            Americans are a tolerant people, but one should not push one's luck too far with them. This is a typical example of Islamists pushing their luck and their religious beliefs in foreign lands. I don't agree with most of Trumps policies, but he is the first American President to truly understand the perfidy of Islamic radicals. If I were this woman, I would not try to mess with the police under the Trump administration.
            1. N
              Aug 12, 2017 at 7:11 pm
              It is hoped that the quintessential Americans will carefully take note of this and other such incidents all over their country and evolve personal strategies to keep their heritage alive and vibrant.
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