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Muslim woman wins $85000 lawsuit after hijab forcibly removed

12 August 2017

"Kirsty Powell, an african-american muslim, had filed a complaint after police officers forcibly removed her veil in front of other police officers and men of dozens of detainees", according to the press release published on Thursday by the Council of american relations-islamic on its website.

A Muslim woman in the U.S. has won $85,000 in damages from the authorities after her hijab was forcibly removed in police custody in 2016.

Powell was the passenger, but was arrested after police found a warrant under her name for a shoplifting incident.

Powell was denied requests for a female officer to search her, and was denied requests to wear her hijab in custody.

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The Muslim woman who wears her hijab for religious reasons was forced to stay the night in jail feeling exposed.

The officers made her take a booking photo without the covering and didn't return it until she was bailed out of jail the next day, court documents say. She then filed a lawsuit in 2016 alleging the police department had violated her First Amendment rights and the settlement was approved this week and is to be paid by the local municipal authority.

"She cried throughout the ordeal and experienced humiliation when both her religious beliefs and personal integrity were violated", the lawsuit claimed.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) on behalf of the woman identified as Kirsty Powell sued the city of Long Beach.

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The city of Long Beach, California, will pay $85,000 to settle the lawsuit filed by Powell.

Female officers are now required to remove headscarves, away from male officers and inmates, and only "when necessary for officer safety", Long Beach assistant city attorney Monte Machit told the Los Angeles Times.

"I would never want anyone to go through what I felt from this experience", Powell said when the suit was filed a year ago, according to CAIR.

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Muslim woman wins $85000 lawsuit after hijab forcibly removed