Farrukh Abbas was walking in his apartment complex when he said he was attacked by his neighbor’s unleashed dog.
But the worst was yet to happen.
According to WPVI-TV, Abbas was verbally and physically assaulted by the dog’s owner on September 7 at the Kingswood Apartment complex in Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania.
Authorities believe Abbas was attacked because he is Muslim.
When Abbas—who has lived in the complex for four years—asked the man to put a leash on his aggressive dog following its second attack, he responded by going on a racist, xenophobic tirade.
So Abbas did what other victims in his situation have done and recorded the suspect on his cellphone for evidence.
The unmasked man ignored social distancing measures and approached Abbas while threatening him with racial slurs and telling him to go back to his own country.
“Get the f’k out of here. Go back to your own country, you f’k!”
When Abbas repeatedly told his aggressor to leash his dog, the response was:
“F’k you and your f’kn’ country! I’ll knock you the f’k out. You want to get knocked out?”
“Come here, you want to get knocked out, huh? Just walk!”
It’s not the dog that needs to be on a leash.
— Ripper⚾️ (@RipperSoftball) September 17, 2020
I am so afraid of certain breeds of dogs that I don't blame the man for asking to have the dog leashed
— Debbie Schanz (@debbies5551) September 17, 2020
The suspect approached Abbas at closer proximity and told him to:
“get the f’k out of my face.”
Things got physically violent when he punched Abbas in the chest with his fists.
Footage from the incident can be seen here.
WARNING: NSFW language.
Abbas said the confrontation was:
“Abusing, slurring. Then he started using the racist remarks.”
He added that he felt no longer welcome in the King of Prussia community where he lived for four years.
“This is our home. And how would it feel if someone asked you to get out of your home.”
Abbas immediately called the police and notified the Center for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) of the incident.
Thanks to the footage, authorities were able to identify the suspect as William Butler.
— Mike Picano (@MichaelPicano) September 19, 2020
— D. J. (@ProgMale) September 18, 2020
Butler has been charged with ethnic intimidation, harassment, and disorderly conduct.
@willb77. William Butler of Pennsylvania let his dog almost attack his Muslim neighbor and was charged with 3 violations???? Menacing, misdemeanor, should have also been charged. Why downgrade the charges? This is where this man lives and he has to deal with an idiot neighbor.
— Chilly Willie (@RogueTeamLeader) September 19, 2020
Racist goes berserk when Muslim asks him to keep aggressive dog on a leash – https://t.co/uSVeVxgJaA now you are infamous, world wide,William Butler.hope your employer can deal with your new infamy.
— Mary G. (@mycarlisle) September 18, 2020
Did he lose his job yet????https://t.co/K6Pt35uYSa
— BossC (@bossladee21) September 18, 2020
Jacob Bender, executive director of CAIR-Philadelphia, said these hate-filled incidents have become an increasing problem.
“We need to bring it to the public and to say this is what’s happening in our country.”
By sharing the video of his disturbing encounter, Abbas hopes to prevent others from being targeted in similar attacks.
After seeing many racially-provoked confrontations caught on video, Abbas never thought he would be in one.
“Until it happens to you, you feel immune.”
“When you experience it yourself, you feel the gravity of the situation. How bad it feels.”
WPVI shared Thursday’s statement from officials, which read:
“Upper Merion Township does not tolerate harassment or intimidation in any form, and certainly not that which is racially or ethnically motivated.”
“We strongly condemn any actions like this in our community, as they do not represent Upper Merion Township, and will do everything in our power to prevent this from continuing.”
“We are deeply sorry that the victim in this incident had to endure this physical and verbal harassment while walking in the community.”
Abbas was not injured from the incident.
According to Patch, a preliminary hearing for Butler is pending.