A hit-and-run collision that injured an Arab Muslim student is being investigated as a potential hate crime by the California Highway Patrol, the Stanford University Department of Public Safety said Nov. 4.
The incident occurred just before 2 p.m. Nov. 3 at Campus Drive and Ayrshire Farm Lane when a driver in a black Toyota 4Runner made eye contact with the victim, accelerated and struck her, shouting, “F— you and your people” out the window of the vehicle, the public safety department said in an alert message to the Stanford community.
The injuries to the victim weren’t life-threatening, the department said.
The San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said it strongly condemned the targeting of the student.
“This shocking incident comes as a stark reminder of the rising climate of Islamophobia and anti-Palestinian hate that has been escalating since Oct. 7,” CAIR-SFBA Executive Director Zahra Billoo said in a statement Oct. 7.
Oct. 7 was the date of an attack by Hamas fighters that killed more than 1,400 Israelis, touching off Israeli retaliation that has killed and injured thousands of Palestinian civilians in Gaza.
Billoo said Arab and Muslim students have sought the university’s assistance in the last several weeks and remain concerned about the “inadequate response that has left them vulnerable.”
The Department of Public Safety said Stanford is working to provide a safe and secure campus environment “in the context of heightened tensions related to the events in Israel and Gaza. This includes additional security that has been deployed at key locations on campus.”
The hit-and-run driver was described as a white man in his mid 20s, with short dirty-blond hair and a short beard, wearing a gray shirt and round framed glasses.
The vehicle with an exposed tire mounted to the rear center was described by the victim as having a white California license plate with the letters M and J.
Any witnesses to the collision are asked to contact the CHP at (650) 779-2700 or the Department of Public Safety at (650) 329-2413.