Ms Lamia is a professionnal caregiver, she daily takes care of elderly people.
On June 30 2013, at 6 pm, Lamia takes the bus like any other night to go to work.
When an elderly woman gets on the bus, Miss Lamia naturally gives away her seat, but the lady refuses and violently invectives Lamia about her headscarf. Follows a stormy debate: “Dirty Arab, go back to your country, you should read the Koran …” screams the lady.
As she is about to get off the bus to go to work, Ms Lamia faces once again the aggressiveness of the old lady. She thinks Lamia is following her, so she shoves Lamia who, this time, replies.
At that moment, a tall man comes to Miss Lamia and violently slaps her. She clings to him to hold him while calling for help. It took the intervention of a few people to stop him.
Requested by Lamia, the police arrives on the scene and, instead of arresting the aggressor, decides to put Miss Lamia in custody.
Like the recent cases in Argenteuil, the victim becomes the suspect and, in this case, is actually arrested. As it is a veiled woman, treatment and investigations take a specific twist.
Miss Lamia finds herself in custody until the next day… for being polite by offering her seat to an elderly person, while her attacker is left free.
It is at this point that the CCIF is alerted by the family of the victim, and the lawyer. The videotapes of the bus are then seized, the police is aware that the victim is being supported, and yet a dozen policemen go to Miss Lamia’s home to arrest her again.
During her testimony as well as during her detention, Ms. Lamia is intimidated by the police, and uses in a disproportionate way its resources against a young woman who is yet, as shown vividly on the video, the true victim in this case.
- Victim of a lady with a racist and islamophobic behavior who verbally assaulted her and then physically shoved her, just because she wears a headscarf.
- Victim of a man who violently slapped her in the face, without being questionned by the police.
- Victim of the bus driver and the bus compagny, who are supposed to ensure the safety of passengers, and never tried to rescue the young woman in this altercation.
- Victim of indifference, even hostility, from onlookers who got involved very late, even though Lamia has already been hit.
- Victim of the police, who started to intimidate the victim at the very beginning of this case, sending a dozen officers at her home, scaring her parents off. Her mother is still in a psychological shock, and actually contacted Miss Lamia’s employer to tell him she was in custody, risking to damage her work reputation.
It took effective action of a lawyer, in good terms with the family of the victim and the CCIF, to release the young woman, whom we will support until the end of this case.
The authorities, once they saw the video, immediately ordered her release. From the beginning of this case, the young Lamia showed determination and unwavering dignity, as well as her family. They are determined to lead this case to its conclusion by requiring the truth and by requiring that all of those who tried to minimize the seriousness of this case be heavily penalized.
How can we understand the role of the police in this case, and the repeated attempts to intimidate the victim?
The research focuses now on the aggressor whose name is close to a political figure.