“A release from the department insists Ayyad not only wasn’t struck by a vehicle nor subjected to racial slurs, but that he was actually injured during an earlier fight with his brother…” – WKYC
An Ohio man and his brother are facing criminal charges after one of the brothers allegedly made up a story about being a victim of an anti-Palestinian hate crime.
According to WKYC, police say they have video footage confirming that Hesham A. Ayyad, 20, was not actually the victim of a hate crime but instead had a physical altercation with his 19-year-old brother, Khalil A. Ayyad.
The Cleveland chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Cleveland) today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate an alleged vehicular assault on a Palestinian-American man as a hate crime.
On Sunday afternoon, an individual in a dark SUV reportedly hit the 20-year-old victim while he was walking on Cook Road on the border of Olmsted Falls and North Ridgeville.
The victim of the reported hit and run said he was walking home from eating lunch when a car slowed down and rolled down the window. The driver of the car allegedly started yelling at him using anti-Palestinian statements like “Kill all Palestinians,” “Long live Israel,” as he swerved his car to intimidate the victim. The driver then allegedly turned around and hit the man while shouting “DIE!”
He was transferred by EMS to St. John Westshore Hospital for his injuries.
Faten Odeh, CAIR-Ohio, Cleveland Interim Executive Director said:
“We call on state, local and federal law enforcement authorities to monitor and investigate crimes related to the rising Islamophobia and anti-Palestinian racism. We hope the North Ridgeville Police Department and the FBI will collect all the information they need to charge this individual with a hate crime. We should all feel safe to walk down the street to grab a bite to eat, go to the store and go to school.”
The press release, which treated Ayyad’s claims as factual without question, was also posted to the CAIR National website (archived link), and a tweet was sent out alerting their 64,000 followers as to what Ayyad claimed happened:
An individual in a dark SUV reportedly hit a man in Ohio before shouting "long live Israel" and anti-Palestinian slurs at him. We urge law enforcement authorities to fully investigate this disturbing attack and charge the perpetrator with a hate crime.https://t.co/6vlX5ZIXS1
— CAIR National (@CAIRNational) October 23, 2023
Several anti-Israel Twitter accounts with large followings promoted the story, also without questioning it, including @CensoredMen (751,000 followers) in a since-deleted tweet, self-proclaimed investigative journalist @ShaykhSulaiman (240,000 followers) in a since-deleted tweet, and Palestinian Dr./Imam Omar Suleiman (863,000 followers) in a tweet that as of this writing is still up but which now contains a Community Note:
Another anti-Palestinian hate crime in the United States. Our politicians and media have done so much harm. Please stay vigilant.
— Dr. Omar Suleiman (@omarsuleiman504) October 24, 2023
Here’s more from WKYC on what police say they uncovered in their investigation:
However, as North Ridgeville police continued to investigate and view surveillance video from the day of the alleged crime, they eventually determined Ayyad had made the whole thing up. A release from the department insists Ayyad not only wasn’t struck by a vehicle nor subjected to racial slurs, but that he was actually injured during an earlier fight with his brother, 19-year-old Khalil A. Ayyad. Footage from the scene confirms the altercation occurred, authorities say.
Both Hesham and Khalil Ayyad were arrested Tuesday and charged with domestic violence and assault. In addition, Hersham Ayyad is accused of making false alarms, falsification, and obstructing official business.
The two brothers were released from custody Wednesday after each posted bond. Both are due back on Elyria Municipal Court this coming Tuesday.
Update: The "hate crime" was a hoax. There was no hit-and-run and no anti-Palestinian slurs. The man was injured in a fight with his own brother, and then @CAIRNational helped him lie about it.https://t.co/H2j9dhk4S0 https://t.co/uTPkqdqoIw
— Israel War Room (@IsraelWarRoom) November 19, 2023
Remember the man who was attacked by a racist shouting anti-Palestine slurs in Ohio?
His name is Hesham A. Ayyad. He was just charged for faking the hate crime. pic.twitter.com/OEUMMDMj2b
— End Wokeness (@EndWokeness) November 19, 2023
This story was picked up by many of the usual sources of misinformation on this site as an example of Palestinian-Americans being targeted by hateful Israel supporters. pic.twitter.com/DAYL5m8tAu
— AG (@AGHamilton29) November 18, 2023
Perhaps the tell here should have been the phony assailant shouting “long live Israel” like a character in Game of Thrones. https://t.co/v8mj5crM2w
— Jimmy (@JimmyPrinceton) November 19, 2023
Hesham A. Ayyad injured by brother, Khalid Ayyad, charged by police for fabricating anti Palestinian hit and run story.
— 𑆩𑆳𑆬𑆴𑆤𑆵 Sarah L Gates (@SarahLGates1) November 19, 2023
“Will CAIR correct the record?” Not yet (if ever), if what they told Newsweek is any indication:
In response to Ayyad’s charges, Odeh told Newsweek in an email that CAIR-Cleveland does not have any additional information on the case.
“We are currently seeking more information about this development,” Odeh said. “Our understanding is the individual has secured his own legal counsel. We do not yet know anything more about the nature of the charges.”
It’s amazing how Ayyad went from being called a “victim” by CAIR-Cleveland in their initial write-up to merely an “individual” once the two brothers were arrested. Surely next time around they’ll treat such stories as allegations that should be thoroughly investigated first instead of immediately jumping to conclusions and assuming the supposed victim is telling the truth, right?
— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —DONATE
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