A New York Muslim woman who claimed she was verbally attacked by Trump supporters on the subway earlier this month, made the whole story up, police said Wednesday.
Yasmin Seweid, 18, was taken into police custody Wednesday on charges stemming from her claim she was accosted by three intoxicated white men on a train in Manhattan December 1. She was released after her arraignment early Thursday in Manhattan Criminal Court.
Seweid has been charged with filing a false police report and obstructing government administration, CBS News reported.
"They were surrounding me from behind and they were like, ‘Oh look, it’s an f***ing terrorist,’" she told reporters at the time. "I didn’t answer. They pulled my strap of the bag and it ripped, and that’s when I turned around and I was really polite and I was like, ‘can you please leave me alone?’ And everyone was looking, no one said a thing, everyone just looked away."
Seweid, who is the U.S.-born daughter of Egyptian parents, claimed the men mentioned Donald Trump and that no one stopped them as they tried to rip off her hijab.
"I was harassed on the subway last night," Seweid wrote in a Facebook post. "And it was just so dehumanizing I can’t speak about it without getting emotional."
Her story, whether true or false, initially made headlines in part because of a reported surge in public Islamophobia that many believe stems from the anti-Muslim tone of President-elect Donald Trump's campaign.
A report from the FBI last month indicated a marked increase in 2015 hate crimes over the previous year, most of them against Muslims.
Civil rights groups nationwide have also cited an uptick in hate-related incidents in the weeks since the presidential election.