August 23, 2016 The Federal Bureau of Investigation is now the lead agency in the investigation into the motive behind a stabbing over the weekend in Virginia. Witnesses told police a man stabbed two victims in an apartment complex on Saturday evening shouted “Allahu Akbar.”
Federal investigators are trying to determine whether the alleged attacker, identified as Wasil Farooqui, 20, of Roanoke, Virginia who carried out the attack was linked to or inspired by the Islamic State or ISIS. Farooqui was taken into custody and charged by Roanoke County Police with two counts of malicious wounding and is being held without bond at Western Virginia Regional Jail.
ABC News reports that law enforcement officials said Farooqui attacked a man and woman with a knife at an apartment complex in Roanoke, yelling “Allahu Akbar.” A law enforcement source told ABC News investigators believe the suspect may have been trying to behead the male victim, who was likely picked at random. The two alleged victims were hospitalized after the attack but their conditions have not been released. Farooqui was placed on a federal watch list after he traveled to Turkey and tried to enter Syria at some point in the past year.
According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, in recent years there have been several similar incidents both in the United States and abroad. In February, a man wielding a machete stormed a restaurant in Columbus, Ohio injured 4 people before he was killed by police. In 2014, a New York City police officer was attacked in broad-daylight by a hatchet wielding self-radicalized Islamist in what NYC officials described as a terrorist attack. ISIS claimed responsibility for a gruesome ax attack carried out by a 17-year-old Afghan refugee in July on a German passenger train.
Cynthia Hodges holds a M.A. in Political Science from NEIU in Chicago, Illinois and a Post-Grad Professional Certificate in Disaster and Terrorism Management from University of North Carolina -Chapel Hill. In addition to a successful writing career, Cynthia is in the process of writing a book on the role of private security guards as first responders in the post 9/11 America. "My career has been a balance of security and education, and my passion for Homeland Security while protecting individual's Constitutional rights has grown as a result of the two."