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Student claims "hate crime" at Cranbrook Schools

Posted at 11:32 AM, Jun 09, 2016

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee is seeking a "hate crime probe" against a group of "possible students" at the Cranbrook Schools, the organization tells Action News.

Cranbrook is a private college-prep school in Bloomfield Hills.

ADC-Michigan says they were contacted by a Muslim-American student who claims she was surrounded by a group of men in two separate incidents on the same day.

She claims she and her mother were subjected to insults, including “ISIS,” “raghead,” and “terrorist." She claims the group of young men also verbally harassed her mother, and screamed racial epithets at her while they warned her to “go back to your country, or we will blow your a## up.”

ADC believes the events were captured on surveillance video.

The group also says later the same day, five young men aggressively pushed the young victim in an attempt to "forcefully restrain her" while she was jogging on campus grounds.

The victim's family and ADC is calling on Cranbrook and local police to do more, insisting their concerns have not been put to rest.

ADC says, "Cranbrook’s dismissal of the victim’s claims and its refusal to send out a campus-wide notification puts her, and the general student body, at risk of verbal and physical harassment."

ADC-Michigan is in contact with law enforcement about the incident, they say.

ADC-Michigan Director, Attorney Fatina Abdrabboh, commented, “This student should never have been in this kind of situation. Cranbrook is a prestigious academy of learning which houses students from all over the world. The school has a responsibility to provide a safe environment for children entrusted in their care. This case is a clear example of increasing Islamophobia. Muslim women are in an especially vulnerable position, and should be treated equally regardless of their religion or race. Hate crimes like this should never be tolerated in a free country.”

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is the nation’s largest Arab-American civil rights and social advocacy organization.

Cranbrook issued the following statement about the incident: 

We are surprised and disappointed to hear these inflammatory allegations that are inconsistent with the ongoing police and school investigation. Cranbrook Schools is a diverse community, enrolling students from 22 countries and from every walk of life.  We have long celebrated the value of diversity in all of its forms and absolutely do not tolerate acts of harassment or discrimination. In order to preserve the integrity of the ongoing investigation we can make no further comment at this time.