Rep. Maryam Khan, the first Muslim member of the Connecticut House, spoke publicly yesterday about the attack she experienced outside a Muslim prayer service for Eid al-Adha.
The representative described her experience in yesterday's press conference, recalling how the attacker threatened to make sexual advances on her and her two daughters, slapped her in the face, and slammed her to the ground. Khan criticized Hartford police for their response, explaining that their initial account downplayed the severity of her experience.
"I have been diagnosed with a concussion, so I don't know exactly what physically happened to me in that moment," Khan said. "I know there was a moment that I thought that I was going to die."
While telling her story, Khan wore a sling for her right arm. But when she gave her statement to the police, she felt like she had to convince them of her injuries.
"‘My neck hurts, my neck is stiff. And I feel it, something is wrong. Can someone please check me?'" she recalled telling the police. "They touched my neck, said it’s not a spine injury. It’s probably muscle pain and gave me an ice pack and said I should go to urgent care if I feel more pain."
After giving statements, she and other witnesses were not escorted back to their cars by police.
"What was the most difficult these last few days was seeing that the police report did not reflect everything, or anything that happened to me," Khan said. "This person came up to us and asked us for a kiss, that's all."
According to The Associated Press, the assailant faced several charges, including assault and unlawful restraint.
"All I kept thinking about these last few days is what happens to women in the city of Hartford that call the police when they are assaulted, when they experienced what I experienced," Khan said.
"If this person was going to grab a woman and do what he did, I’m glad he grabbed me," Khan proclaimed. "No one else would have done a press conference, no one else would have had a news story."