FAIRFAX, Va. - A lawyer for the family of a Reston teen murdered during Ramadan tells FOX 5 her parents became so emotional when seeing the accused killer in court on Friday it led to an emotional outburst that halted the proceedings.
The outburst happened during a preliminary hearing for 22-year-old Darwin Martinez Torres. Torres is accused of attacking 17-year-old Nabra Hassanen with a bat, then killing her in June.
The encounter began when Nabra Hassanen's friends who were walking near the All Dulles Area Muslim Society in Sterling, Virginia. Fairfax County police said Nabra Hassanen's friends got into an argument with Torres, who was in a car. Torres is accused of chasing the group then attacking and abducting Nabra Hassanen. Her body was found in a pond in Loudoun County.
According to multiple reports, Nabra Hassanen's parents began shouting at Torres in court Friday. The teen's mother is even reported to have thrown a shoe at the suspect.
Chief Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney Casey Lingan told FOX 5 after the outburst, Torres waived his right to a preliminary hearing. Extra Fairfax County deputies had to be called in to secure the courthouse after the incident.
Torres' case will go to a grand jury Monday morning, which will decide whether to indict him on a felony murder charge and allow the case to continue to trial.
Dozens of Nabra Hassanen's friends appeared at the courthouse to show support for the teen's family.
"We have seen how hard it feels to lose someone's daughter and to see the suspect of the murder in front of their eyes. We were overwhelmed by the emotions," said Nihad Awad, national executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations.
Nabra Hassanen's father Mohmod Hassanen also spoke to reporters after the court hearing, calling for justice for his daughter.
"We're looking justice for Nabra. All of us we come here today justice for Nabra," Mohmod Hassanen said.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement placed a detainer on the suspect Torres, telling FOX 5 they believe he is in the country illegally.