A man from Florida has been acquitted of burglary after the accuser repeatedly said it was his Muslim identity which was the reason for reporting the false crime.
Yousef Mohammed Muslet was acquitted this week of burglary with a battery on a person aged 65-years-old.
However, he was also facing a prison sentence for talking about Allah and shaking the man’s hand.
On Wednesday 7 September, after five hours of hearing witness testimonies and recorded evidence, the Palm Beach County judge confirmed that a conversation about God and a handshake should not be considered a crime and acquitted Muslet.
The incident that led to the trial took place last December. Two men leaving a party at Muslet’s neighbour’s house stopped their truck to blow their horns at Muslet’s children who were playing in the street.
Muslet approached the truck, introduced himself, shook the driver’s hand and briefly spoke with the driver about Islam and his desire to visit the local Baptist church.
Nine days later Muslet was arrested after being identified by Hal Howard, the truck’s driver.
Howard had alleged Muslet, dressed in Islamic clothing, had physically assaulted him, shaking him violently through the truck window as he tried to leave the party.
Howard reiterated several times his reasons for reporting the incident had everything to do with Muslet being a Muslim.
Muslet maintained that he only shook the driver’s hand. The testimony from Howard and the witness confirmed his account.
Mr Muslet has since stated his gratitude to all those who supported him: “I would like to thank @cairflorida especially Thania Clevenger, Omar Saleh and Flynn Bertisch. They represented me in my case. I found Not Guilty on all charges. I was facing up to life in prison if convicted. It’s been 9 months and 9 days since my arrest on the 29th of December. I want to also thank everyone who kept me in their prayers.”