The college student accused of stabbing a Jamaica cabbie over his Muslim faith barely spoke when he pleaded not guilty to his charges last week, but a newly released police report claims he was shooting his mouth off to the authorities.
Michael Enright was formally charged in Manhattan Supreme Court Sept. 22, with attempted murder and assault as hate crimes in the Aug. 24 stabbing of Ahmad H. Sharif.
Enright, who has been remanded to the psychiatric ward at Bellevue Hospital indefinitely, was being driven by the Bangladeshi immigrant in Manhattan when the two got into a conversation about Sharif’s faith and Enright allegedly stabbed him while shouting, “Assalaumu Alaikum,” meaning “Peace be with you,” in Arabic, police said.
Sharif survived but suffered serious wounds to his neck and shoulder.
The angry rhetoric did not stop there, according to the criminal complaint released after the arraignment, during which the 21-year-old pleaded not guilty. At first Enright, a student at the School of Visual Arts who had spent time in Afghanistan filming a movie earlier in the year, told the officer he was defending himself, the complaint said.
“What did I do wrong? I need my mother,” he allegedly said.
He also accused the police of racial bias because he was an “Irish Catholic,” but later said he was Jewish, the complaint said. City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said he did not believe Enright was Jewish.
“You’re going to ruin the entire Jewish race by locking me up,” said Enright, who was drunk at the time of his arrest.
The suspect continued to rant against Muslims as the police took him to Bellevue for an evaluation.
“You allow them to blow up buildings in this country,” he said.
Enright was ordered to return to court Nov. 22, according to a spokeswoman for the Manhattan district attorney’s office.
Sharif’s stabbing came on the heels of the rise in tensions against Muslims in the wake of the proposed Islamic center near Ground Zero. A day after the incident, the father of four met with the mayor, police commissioner and dozens of supporters and called on the city to be more tolerant.
Reach reporter Ivan Pereira by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-260-4546.
©2010 Community News Group
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