Authorities say a 71-year-old Illinois man was charged with a hate crime on Sunday after allegedly fatally stabbing a little boy and severely injuring a lady because of their Muslim beliefs and the Israel-Hamas conflict.
The 32-year-old lady and 6-year-old son were discovered by police late Saturday morning in a residence in Plainfield Township, southwest of Chicago, according to a statement posted on social media by the Will County Sheriff’s Office.
The statement also stated that the woman had sustained many stab wounds but was expected to live and that the boy had been confirmed dead at a hospital. The child’s autopsy revealed that he had also been stabbed numerous times.
According to the sheriff’s statement, “Detectives were able to establish that both victims in this brutal attack were targeted by the suspect due to their religion of Islam and the ongoing Middle Eastern conflict involving Hamas and the Israelis.”
The woman contacted 911 to report that her landlord had attacked her with a knife, the sheriff’s office said, adding that she then fled into a toilet and continued to fend him off.
According to an autopsy, the youngster had been stabbed repeatedly with a knife, the sheriff’s office reported. The woman was still in the hospital on Sunday with more than a dozen stab wounds but was expected to live.
According to investigators, the guy accused of carrying out the attack was discovered Saturday outside the house “sitting upright outside on the ground near the driveway of the residence” and suffering from a cut on his forehead.
He was being held on Sunday while awaiting his court date. His charges include first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, two counts of hate crimes, and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, according to the authorities.
The two victims’ names were withheld by the authorities. Later on Sunday, the Chicago branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations held a press conference with a relative who was aware of their identities. According to the report, family members’ text conversations revealed the attacker had insulted Muslims.
The incident, which the Muslim civil liberties organization referred to as “our worst nightmare,” is a result of a troubling uptick in hate mail and phone calls that has occurred since the start of the Israel-Hamas conflict.