SKETCH: Suspect wanted for religious attack on Muslim woman

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Officials in the Harris County Sheriff's Office have released a sketch of the man they say attacked a Muslim woman earlier this month and berated her with religious slurs.

According to the Houston chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Houston), the 25-year-old victim, who is white and wears an Islamic head scarf (hijab), says she was driving home from her job as a nurse when her vehicle was almost sideswiped by a red SUV in northwest Harris County.

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Reward offered for information on the attack of a Muslim nurse, Deborah Wrigley reports.

When the victim pulled over and got out of her vehicle to check for damage after the near accident, the attacker made a U-turn and pulled up behind the victim's vehicle.

The driver reportedly got out of his SUV and began shouting obscenities and racial and religious slurs such as, "Oh my God, it's a r**head," "It's an f***ing r**head," "sand n*****" and other derogatory terms.

She believes it was because she was wearing a hijab.

"She said a driver nearly sideswiped her," said Sobia Siddiqui, with the Houston office of the Council on American Islamic Relations. "She thought it was road rage."

The victim tried to get back in her vehicle, but the passenger side door was locked. At that point the attacker began waving a knife in the victim's face and then hit her with its handle on her shoulder and arms.

A man who was riding in the alleged attacker's SUV got out and tried to restrain him, but not before the woman was stabbed in the arm. The attacker's passenger reportedly convinced him to get back in his SUV and they left the scene.

The victim returned to the hospital where she works to have her injury treated.

The alleged attacker and the man who was with him are described as white males, 20 to 35 years of age. The alleged attacker had tattoos on his arms and neck.

"We hope that anyone who has information about this potentially deadly and apparently bias-motivated attack will immediately contact law enforcement authorities," said CAIR-Houston Executive Director Mustafaa Carroll.

Officials with the Harris County Sheriff's Office are investigating the case.
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