Man Pulls Off Woman's Winter Scarf Because He Thought She Was Muslim

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New York - A New York woman was making a quick run to a local Starbucks on a cold morning last week when she became the target of a hate crime.

Jennifer Simonetti, 35, is not a Muslim. But she was wearing a scarf as she was headed to the Starbucks in West Brighton because of low temperatures.

After parking down the street, she was approached by a man.

"I was closing the door and facing the car when he came up behind me," Simonetti said. "He pulled my scarf down and told me 'you can't wear this s--t no more.'"

"He pushed me against my car and started touching me," Simonetti added.

Simonetti said that the assailant wasn't alone and that two other men were present and "watched and smiled."

"It took me two minutes to realize what was happening and I screamed and they ran off," Simonetti said.
On Wednesday, Nov. 16 a formal complaint was filed for forcible touching, a spokesman from the NYPD

Deputy Commissioner of Public Information confirmed.

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The suspect slid his hands up and down the victim's body, police said.

There have been no arrests at this time and the investigation is ongoing.

Simonetti said that after she sat in her car to drive to her job she felt shocked and couldn't work out what had just happened to her.

She believes this happened because the suspect confused her scarf with a hijab.

"I am not Muslim. My ears were cold," Simonetti wrote in a Facebook post. "But, because they thought I was Muslim, they felt it was their duty to inform me that I can't wear a hijab 'no more.'"

"It's so ridiculous to me that this happened," she said. "I feel numb." 
 

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