Migrant Tales insight: The police has criticized us for insisting that Rashid H’s case was a hate crime. The police claim that what happened to the Pakistani migrant on February 23 was not a hate crime. They said that they have access to information that is not available to the public and can make better judgements about a crime than us. True, but what about the victim? Certainly, Rashid H and his family have first-hand information as victims. Both of them are adamant: What happened was a hate crime.
The police told Rashid’s wife that what happened to her husband was not a hate crime because “it wasn’t planned.” She even claimed that the police had told her that the assailants were intoxicated and therefore could not be a hate crime.
One matter that surprises me on some occasions is how rapidly the police determine a crime is not a hate crime. This happened in Rashid H’s case. The following day after the attack, his wife got a call from the police and the first thing she asked was if what happened was a hate crime. The police responded that it wasn’t.
How did they arrive at such a conclusion so rapidly?
Moreover, when I spoke to the investigating officer about the matter, he said that he had interrogated the three assailants and he vouched that they “weren’t racists.” Really? Did he give them a test? Determining if a person is racist is the wrong way to go about the matter. We should ask instead the following question: Could what happened or what was said be interpreted as racist?
When the police investigate a crime, they look at matters like who, where and when but rarely why.
We believe that our reporting on Rashid H’s case had a positive impact on the police investigation. Initially, the police had charged the three suspects with attempted manslaughter but on April 19, close to two months later, they changed it to attempted murder.
The three youths were sentenced on May 25 to 9.5 years in prison for their crime.
Even if the district court and court of appeal did not accept what happened to me was a hate crime, I feel today desperate and abandoned. When I was in the hospital with 30 stab wounds, fractured skull and other life-threatening injuries caused by three white Finnish youths, I felt forsaken. Not one person from the government or any newspaper cared to contact me.
I cannot understand this behavior and why.
Read the full story here.
Even if the police claims that what happened was not a hate crime, I have my doubts. The following doubt will always hound me: Would I have been attacked in such a vicious manner if I were a Finn?