Muslim Woman in Minnesota Awarded $120,000 For Being ‘Forced’ to Remove Her Hijab For Mugshot

A Muslim woman living in Minnesota was awarded $120,000 for being ‘forced’ to remove her hijab for her mugshot following her arrest.

A judge issued a warrant for Aida Shyef Al-Kadi’s arrest after she missed a court hearing after she was ticketed for a traffic offense.

Al-Kadi filed a lawsuit claiming the county “violated her constitutional rights and discriminated against her for her religious beliefs” for forcing her to remove her hijab in front of a male jail guard.

Al-Kadi also says her religious beliefs were violated because she was forced to wear a jail uniform — like everyone else in jail.

The Guardian reported:

A Minnesota Muslim woman has received $120,000 to settle her lawsuit alleging she was forced to strip in jail and remove her hijab for a booking photo over a traffic offense, the woman and her attorneys said Tuesday.

Aida Shyef Al-Kadi appeared with her attorneys at the Minneapolis headquarters of the Council on American-Islamic Relations to announce the settlement approved last month.

Al-Kadi, 57, said her treatment at the Ramsey county jail in August 2013 was “one of the most humiliating and harmful experiences” of her life.

“I knew that I did not want any other Muslim woman to experience what I did,” she said.

When Al-Kadi turned herself in, she said, she was told to remove her hijab and abaya, a long dress that covered her body, in front of male jailers. When she objected, she said, she was removed from the area and taken to a holding cell, where she removed her hijab in front of a male jailer.

And just like that, because of the lawsuit, the jail has bowed to Sharia law and has implemented procedures to accommodate Muslim women.

Under the settlement, the jail has put in place specific rules about how to accommodate inmates with religious headwear when taking booking photos. The county also agreed to destroy all hard copies and delete any electronic copies of Al-Kadi’s booking photo, the Guardian reported.


Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch said of this lawsuit and settlement, “Every other prisoner is expected to get a mugshot and exchange his or her own clothes for jail clothes, but not Aida Shyef Al-Kadi, a Muslim woman in Minnesota.”

“$120,000. Taxpayers foot the bill for these special entitlements. What about the rights of taxpayers in the midst of this growing two-tier system of justice? Note that the settlement did not require the county “to admit wrongdoing.” And it did no wrong. Any number of things could be hidden in a hijab,” Spencer added.

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