(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - A Muslim man in the US state of New York has been imprisoned after being convicted of second-degree assault although several witnesses described the incident as self-defense.
Michael Williams, 39, is accused of hitting a man who had verbally attacked a group of women, with his loudspeaker.
“I had many witnesses that testified that the man assaulted me first. I reacted simply out of fear, not knowing what else he was going to do to me. [It was] out of self-defense, you know,” Williams said, referring to the January 11, 2011 incident.
According to Williams and his six witnesses, Joe Kenney had verbally harassed the women during a pro-Palestinian rally.
The confrontation started when Williams attempted to draw Kenney’s attention to himself by shouting pro-Palestinian slogans through his speaker.
The witnesses say New York police officers who came to the scene showed no interest in their side of the story. “…They did not take notes. They did not take our names. They did not take our numbers,” one of the witnesses says.
According to Williams’ attorney Lamis Deek, the prosecution received its verdict through its use of “malicious tactics” even “alleging that our witnesses were lying because of their political beliefs, because of their religious beliefs.”
After Williams, a father of two, serves his 90-day sentence, he will be on five years of probation. He must also pay Kenney more than USD 2,000 in restitution.