Menendez hated Muslims and Hindus for the 9/11 attacks.
By Raif Karerat
WASHINGTON, DC: A woman who admitted to deliberately shoving an Indian American man off a New York City subway platform directly onto the path of an oncoming train in a murder motivated by racial hate, has been sentenced to 24 years in prison.
“I’m prejudiced,” she told the New York Post. “I pushed him in front of the train because I thought it was cool.”
Erika Menendez was duly this past Wednesday sentenced to 24 years in prison after pleading guilty to manslaughter for killing Sunando Sen in December 2012 in Queens.
According to the Daily Mail, the 33-year-old Queens woman was seen talking to herself and pacing back and forth on a No. 7 train platform.
As the train entered the station, witness stated Menendez approached Sen from behind and pushed him onto the tracks. Sen was immediately struck by the train and died of multiple blunt force trauma.
Menendez told police she did it because she has hated Muslims and Hindus since the September 11, 2001, terror attacks, reported Fox News.
“I’m not mad about the people. I’m mad because I liked the buildings,” Menendez told the New York Post during an interview from Rikers Island prison in 2013. “I just wanted to hurt Muslims and Hindus ever since [9/11].”
The mentally ill woman also revealed to The Post that she hadn’t taken her drugs that day because she hated the side effects. She said she preferred to “self-medicate” by smoking marijuana but she hadn’t smoked a “blunt” on the day she took Sen’s life, and even claimed she would not have pushed Sen had she done so.
Queens District Attorney Richard Brown echoed the sentiment of the NYC community, calling the killing “every subway commuter’s worst nightmare.”
Earlier this year, the nation was rocked by a faith-motivated triple murder in Chapel Hill, S.C. Three Muslims were gunned down in cold blood by their neighbor in what was thought to be a dispute over a parking space but seemed to imply a different motive.
One of the victims, 21-year-old Yusor Abu-Salha, had previously told her father that the shooter, Craig Hicks, made her uncomfortable, saying “he hates us for who we are and how we look.”
The Washington Post revealed Hicks’s Facebook page had many hateful posts about religion, and the victims’ relatives said he became hostile only after Abu-Salha, who was visibly Muslim because of her headscarf, moved into the home with her new husband, Mohammad. Her sister, who also wears a headscarf, was slain as well.
Anti-Muslim hate crimes have sustained a dramatic rise ever since the events of September 11, 2001. According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports program, Prior to the 9/11 attacks it typically recorded between 20 and 30 anti-Muslim hate crimes per year. But in 2001 that number rose more than tenfold to nearly 500. In the years since, annual hate crimes against Muslims have consistently hovered in the 100-150 range — roughly five times higher than the pre-9/11 rate.