Tracker Pixel for Entry

​“We’re Going To Kill All Of You”

News | July 25th, 2017

White woman threatens Somali-Americans outside of Walmart, fifth hate crime incident in 2017

FARGO – Three Fargoans, originally from Somalia, were stopped Tuesday evening outside of Walmart by a white woman from Mapleton and threatened while dozens of onlookers did nothing to intervene.

The women who were verbally attacked, Rowda Soyan, Sarah and Laleyla Hassan, were enjoying a day off from work when a blonde woman approached. Before they could enter the store around 5:30 p.m., the incident began, and video footage started halfway through the exchange.

“You’re a racist person, and I’m not going back to my country,” Soyan said in near-perfect English in the video.

“I’m an American,” the white woman, who later commented on Facebook about the Youtube video, said. According to the post her name is Amber Elizabeth Hensley, and she worked for Horab & Wentz, CPA.

“What are you going to do?” Soyan said.

“We’re going to kill all of you, we’re going to kill every one of you fucking Muslims.”

“I am making a video and I am going to show it to the police,” Soyan said.

“Do you think the police care? Why are you in our country anyway?”

The incident marks the fifth such case this year, Hukun Abdullahi, co-founder of United African Youths, and founder of Afro American Development Association, said.

“It is happening, and I think this must be stopped,” Abdullahi said. “I don’t see any leaders condemning this issue. This will keep continuing.”

During the incident, people entering and exiting the Walmart on 13th Avenue stopped to watch, but no one tried to help.

“No one stood up for us, nobody even said a word, it was a scary moment for all of us,” Soyan said. “She went on and on, and it was really really scary. Out of nowhere, she just came and said those hateful words. It was an ‘Are you out of your mind’ moment?”

Soyan called police, and a report was made under case number 17-61490. Fargo Police were contacted for comment, but were not available.

“Her car had a Trump sign, and she said he’s the one who is going to send us back to our country,” Soyan said.

Hensley apologized for the "horrible things that I said to the two ladies at Walmart," according to her Facebook post. "It was not a Christian-like thing to do at all, and wish I could take it back, but I lost my cool, and I can't."

In the apology, Hensley said that the women parked too close to her car, and refused to move.

"I asked her again and she swore at me, calling me a fat bitch, to that I informed her that I was a Christian and asked if she knew who Jesus was." 

Soyan has lived in Fargo for nearly five years, and the others for nearly three years, she said.

Tuesday’s incident wasn’t the first time Soyan has been attacked by racists. Her car was spray painted earlier in the year, and police couldn’t help by classifying the incident as a hate crime, she said. Insurance wouldn’t cover the damages, so she had to pay out of pocket.

Such attacks aren’t labelled as hate crimes in Fargo, as the state doesn’t officially define such incidents as hate crimes, Barry Nelson, of the North Dakota Human Rights Coalition, said.

“I guess as far as North Dakota Human Rights Coalition, this is not what should be representing Fargo to other Fargoans,” Nelson said. “This is Fargo on Fargo crime, and it is unconscionable. We must keep exposing this so that we as a community work actively to eliminate this.

Amber Elizabeth Hensley's apology“This should not be happening to any of us.”

An assault on a Somali-American on July 2 in Fargo that is being investigated as a possible hate crime by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, was virtually swept under the rug, Nelson said.

James Patrick Billiot, 32, Fargo, and Justin William Rifanburg, 28, West Fargo, assaulted Shuib Ali, who was moving into an apartment when the attack occurred after racial epithets were said, according to police reports. Nelson said the two men were charged with simple assault, a misdemeanor, and were fined $250 for their crime, and the victim was not alerted to the court case.

“He found out a week later what happened,” Nelson said. “This happened at his home. I think police did what they could do, but I’m really questioning our judicial system. I don’t know if it’s a lack of awareness, of course, we don’t have any hate crime laws, and it doesn't rise to a level of definition.”

On August 2, North Dakota United Against Hate Crime is planning to hold a rally to generate support for victims of hate crime, and to start generating momentum behind getting a hate crime law passed — once again. Nelson made attempts ten years ago with the state legislature for a legal recognition of hate crimes, but his efforts went nowhere, he said.

“The response in the legislature was that we have laws that cover these things, but they don’t understand the layers of hate crime,” Nelson said.

Recently in:

By Laura Simmonslaurasimmons2025@u.northwestern.eduSummit Carbon Solutions approached North Dakota land owner Kurt Swensonin August 2021, requesting to lease out Swenson’s land to sequester, or store, carbon dioxide underground…

By Sabrina Hornungsabrina@hpr1.comExhibit recreates and examines the iconic bar’s legacyThere’s something to be said about a good bar. The really good ones serve as a sort of community living room, bringing folks from all walks…

Saturday, December 10, doors 8pm, show at 9pmThe Aquarium, FargoHeavy fuzz rock straight outta Fargo with Hevvy Swetter and Prediction of the Witch.“Closely related to stoner rock, it tends to focus upon downtuned, heavy guitar.…

By HPR Staffsubmit@hpr1.comOur opinion: How can it be 17 years?It’s hard to believe that Ralph’s has been gone for 17 years. I was lucky enough to experience the tail end of its legacy, though technically I wasn’t old enough…

By Ed Raymondfarhogadfly@gmail.com Why Not Pass Black-White Flag Laws to Label Who Lies, Cheats, and Stinks?We have “red flag” laws in 19 states to keep weapons out of the hands of malcontents and the mentally unbalanced who…

Well shiver me timbers. After weeks of sampling some of the finest drinks in F-M from more bars than we could shake a belaying pin at, the results of High Plains Reader’s 6th Annual Cocktail Showdown are in! For nine weeks,…

By Rick Gionrickgion@gmail.comAs someone who’s written a lot of feature stories and press releases, it’s tempting to write something cheesy as a lead for this month’s column. But, instead, this column will actually feature…

By Martin Beckmanbeckmanniscool@gmail.comSpec is a new hardcore band from the Fargo area featuring Josh on guitar, Ethan on vocals, Austin on guitar, Landon on bass and Robby– drummyboy. Spec has been creating waves with their…

By Greg Carlsongregcarlson1@gmail.com“Citizenfour” Oscar-winner Laura Poitras profiles photographer and activist Nan Goldin in “All the Beauty and the Bloodshed.” Like its talented subject, the movie cannot be confined to a…

By Sabrina Hornungsabrina@hpr1.comIf you’ve ever driven down the Enchanted Highway, the 32-mile ribbon of road connecting Regent to Gladstone in western North Dakota, home to the world’s largest salvaged metal sculptures,…

By Jessica M. Hawkesjmhawkes84@gmail.comIt wasn’t long after the founding of the railroad and river town of New Rockford that entertainment venues started to put down their own roots. Its population bolstered by booms of nearby…

By Sabrina Hornungsabrina@hpr1.comCharlie Berens is a man of many hats. The creator of the “Manitowoc Minute” is a newsman, comedian, writer and musician. We had the opportunity to speak with the Wisconsin native about his new…

By Kris Gruberperriex1@gmail.comSpring is here (mostly), and our area is buzzing with people eager to get back out and about -- many newly vaccinated and feeling a bit safer. Partnering with Jade Events, Fargo Brewing is just…

By John Showalter  john.d.showalter@gmail.comThey sell fentanyl test strips and kits to harm-reduction organizations and…

By Sabrina Hornungsabrina@hpr1.comPhoto by: Michelle Tait, Memory Makers Old Time PhotographyIn August URL Radio personality Stacy Sturm knew she wanted to do something for Halloween. She tossed around the thought of a Halloween…

By Waylon Hedegaardretiringwithcats@gmail.comFor all those who still decry my departure from the Evangelical/Fundamentalist Christian faith, understand that I will never return. I see the examples you set and want no part of…