A male employee of a Troy gas station is facing a criminal charge after allegedly groping a customer who had asked for help, police said.
It was 8:45 p.m. on May 4, when a woman customer tried to buy gas at the Mobil Gas Station at 25 E. 14 Mile, just east of John R.
The woman told Troy police that she was pumping gas and had a problem with the machine’s credit card reader. She waved over the employee, who police identify as Abdelnasser Mohammed, 25, from Detroit.
Rather than help the woman, police say Mohammed “touched the victim’s groin area” and tried to arrange a quid pro quo in which he would help the woman and she would do a sexual favor for him.
The woman called 911 and Troy police made the arrest. The next day, the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office charged Mohammed, who was arraigned on a charge of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct. He was given a $10,000 cash-or-surety, 10 percent bond, police say.
WND contacted Troy Police Department Wednesday and asked for the suspect’s immigration status and was told the city does not ask for such information.
“I do not know his status. He was not asked, not that I’m aware of. We don’t ask people their immigration status. We ask other questions, such as place of birth,” Sgt. Megan Lehman of Troy Police Department told WND.
She told WND she would look up the suspect’s file and call back with his place of birth.
“The booking card is not in a place I can assess it through the computer I’ll have to pull the hard copy,” she said, agreeing to do so and call back with the information.
She never called back despite repeated phone messages.
The name “Abdelnasser” means “conqueror” or “victorious” in Arabic and is common among Muslim families in Syria and the Palestinian territories, Arabic speakers told WND.
Michigan has been consistently among the top three or four states for receiving Syrian refugees, and Troy is the No. 1 destination city for Syrians arriving weekly in the state.
Since the Syrian civil war broke out in 2011, nearly 2,200 Syrian refugees have been distributed throughout Michigan, with Troy getting 657, followed by 481 sent to Clinton Township, 387 to Dearborn, 147 to Ann Arbor and 130 to Battle Creek, according to the U.S. State Department’s Refugee Processing Center. Detroit received 20 and nearby Hamtramck 43.
Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, doing business as “Samaritas,” has a processing office in Troy, from which it distributes refugees into both Oakland and Macomb counties. Many have been temporarily held in a hotel in Sterling Heights owned by a CAIR-connected businessman that has been nicknamed “Hotel Damascus,” as WND has previously reported.