So it begins.
LOWELL — A 22-year-old Syrian refugee is behind bars after only two months in the United States after he was accused Thursday night of inappropriately touching a 13-year-old girl at a state-run swimming pool in Lowell.
In Lowell District Court on Friday, Emad Hasso, of Lowell, was ordered held on $25,000 cash bail after pleading not guilty via an interpreter to one count of indecent assault and battery on someone under 16.
Judge Stacy Fortes set the bail over the defense attorney’s objections, because Hasso’s only ties to this country are his family members with whom he lives.
Prosecutor Sam Miller said that around 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, the 13-year-old Lowell girl was at the Raymond Lord Memorial Pool at the North Common Park in Lowell when she said a man approached her, touched her upper thigh and asked her age.
The girl told him she was too young for him and walked away, Miller said.
The man, who was later identified as Hasso, allegedly began to follow the girl around the pool and approached her again when she was swimming, touching her upper thigh and again asking her age.
The girl responded that she was a “little kid, leave me alone,” Miller said.
Other people at the pool, including the lifeguard, saw some of the interaction between Hasso and the alleged victim, and intervened, Miller said.
Police said the incident may have been captured on video security cameras at the pool.
When questioned by the Massachusetts Environmental Police, who oversee state pools operated by the state Department of Conservation and Recreation, Hasso indicated he had been in the U.S. for about two months.
Defense attorney William Kittredge said Hasso, who speaks little English, receives assistance from the International Institute of New England, a nonprofit group with an office in Lowell that offers information and resources to refugees and immigrants.
Kittredge said Hasso told him that while he was swimming in the pool he may have “accidentally bumped” the girl, but he denies inappropriately touching the teen or speaking to her.
During a hearing in which the girl’s mother was granted a harassment order on behalf of her daughter, Hasso used the interpreter to tell the judge, “First of all, I don’t speak the language and I haven’t spoke to her.”
Fortes ordered that Hasso have no contact with anyone under 16, except for family members, stay away from the victim, the Lord pool and all DCR properties.
Hasso is scheduled for a pretrial conference on July 29.
The Muslim rapefugees are here and tens of thousands more are coming…for your daughters…whether you believe it or not. Do not expect the government or media (redundant?) to protect or warn you.
Update from WND: City rips secret planting of Syrian ‘refugees’
Hasso is part of one of four Syrian families resettled by the International Institute from October 2015 through July.
Hasso’s family was resettled into 82 Willie St. in the city’s Acre neighborhood, the Sun reported. A man who answered the door at that address Monday evening provided a piece of paper to the Sun reporter Amelia Pak Harvey, indicating that he did not speak English.
City Manager Kevin Murphy said he’d like to receive regular numbers from the federal contractor that resettles refugees in the city. The International Institute subcontracts with the main federal contractor, U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, or USCRI, to deliver refugees to Lowell.
The city does not know when or from where refugees come to Lowell, Murphy said, and is only made aware of them in instances like this one where a refugee gets arrested or otherwise singled out for bad behavior.
“I think we’ll reach out to the International Institute to see if they could cooperate with us in the future by letting us know when they relocate individuals to Lowell,” Murphy said.
Secrecy of refugee program a widespread problem
Refugee watchdog Ann Corcoran, who has been following the federal refugee program for nearly nine years, said lack of transparency is the most oft-cited issue by critics, which has included many mayors and governors.
“This is the way they have been running the program forever. They arrogantly have been operating in secrecy for two decades, under the arrogant assumption that we the taxpayers don’t deserve to know what is going into our communities, what the costs are, what the security risks are, and so forth,” Corcoran told WND.
Refugee resettlement agencies like USCRI, Catholic Charities and Lutheran Social Services hold quarterly “stakeholder meetings” in most communities, but the taxpaying public is never notified of these meetings. And no legal ads or notices about what is discussed at the meetings is ever posted by the resettlement agencies working as fronts for the federal government.
“People don’t like secrecy, and that’s why we are seeing backlash in every community where this program has been exposed,” Corcoran said. “Unfortunately, there are still many communities where it operates completely in the shadows, and residents have no idea what is going on with these refugees.”
The mayors of Springfield, Massachusetts; Amarillo, Texas; Athens, Georgia; Manchester, New Hampshire, and several other towns have all complained to the Obama administration that they want more information on refugees before their arrival.
Citizen activists have complained about the same lack of transparency in many other cities including Spartanburg, South Carolina; Twin Falls, Idaho; Fargo, North Dakota; Rochester, Michigan; Missoula, Montana; and several areas of Tennessee.
But nothing has deterred the Obama State Department, which has ignored the complaints and concerns, citing the Refugee Act of 1980 as the source of its authority. That law, authored by the late Sen. Ted Kennedy and former Sen. Joe Biden, gives the states and localities very little power to stop the influx of United Nations-selected refugees.
A total of 85,000 refugees are being permanently resettled in more than 190 U.S. cities and towns during fiscal year 2016, up from 70,000 in 2015. President Obama plans to increase the ceiling again in fiscal 2017, to 100,000.
Obama’s expanded refugee plans, fully funded by the GOP-controlled Congress, call for 10,000 Syrians to be permanently resettled in the U.S. in fiscal 2016, which ends Sept. 30.
With a little over two months to go before the Sept. 30 deadline, Obama has thus far delivered 5,449 Syrians to the U.S. They are now arriving at a rate of nearly 400 per week.
Where the Syrians are being sent
Some of the cities receiving heavy numbers of Syrian refugees are the following:
- Atlanta, Savannah and Stone Mountain, Georgia
- Asheville, High Point, Raleigh-Durham, Greensboro, Winston-Salem and Charlotte, North Carolina
- Columbia, South Carolina
- Dearborn, Clinton Township, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Troy, Battle Creek, Ann Arbor, Bloomfield Hills, Bloomfield Township, W. Bloomfield Township, Madison Heights, Sterling Heights, Ypsilanti and Lansing, Michigan
- Boise, Idaho
- Columbus, Toledo and Cleveland, Ohio
- Buffalo, Albany and Syracuse, New York
- Elizabeth, Camden, Bellmawr, Hawthorne, Jersey City, Moorestown, Woodland Park and Paterson, New Jersey
- Lowell, Worchester, Springfield-West Springfield, Westfield, Billerica, Massachusetts
- Minneapolis, Rochester and Savage, Minnesota
- Omaha, Nebraska
- Kansas City and Wichita, Kansas
- Erie, Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, Houston, Plano, Sugarland, Tomball and San Antonio, Texas
- Denver and Thornton, Colorado
- Des Moines, Iowa
- Salt Lake City, Utah
- Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky
- Baltimore, Riverdale, Ellicott City and Silver Spring, Maryland
- Tampa, Clearwater and Jacksonville, Florida
- Glendale, Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona
- New Haven, Hartford, New Britain, Stratford and West Haven, Connecticut
- Portland, Maine
- Concord, New Hampshire
- Saint Louis and Kansas City, Missouri
- Las Vegas, Nevada
- New Orleans and Baton Rouge, Louisiana
- Albuquerque, New Mexico
- Tulsa, Oklahoma
- Portland, Oregon
- Nashville and Memphis, Tennessee
- Charlottesville, Newport News, Roanoke, Harrisonburg, Powhatan and Falls Church, Virginia
- Oshkosh, Sheboygan, Milwaukee-Madison, Wisconsin
- Spokane, Seattle, Richland and Kent, Washington
- Chicago, Indianapolis, San Diego, Sacramento, Los Angeles.
Obama ignored the concerns of the governors and began delivering Syrians en masse to almost every state along with a steady stream of Somali, Afghan, Iraqi and Burmese Muslims.
Related: Obama puts Americans at risk in ways too numerous to count: Vermont Admits Seventeen Refugees Diagnosed With Active TB