Guilt Confirmed

Guilty Plea in C&O Attack

by Yusef Najafi
Published on November 20, 2008, 12:00am | Comments

The Washington Metropolitan Police Department announced Nov. 12 that 19-year-old Virginia resident, Ruddad Abdulgader, originally from Sudan, has pleaded guilty to two criminal counts before D.C. Superior Court Judge Harold L. Cushenberry Jr.

Abdulgader pleaded guilty to ''felony assault with bias intent,'' for his involvement in an ''unprovoked hate crime attack'' against a gay man, whom he hit with a vodka bottle. The attack took place in the 3400 block of M Street NW on Oct. 3. Abdulgader and his friend, Saad Elarch, a native of Morocco, ran into the victim and his friend along the C&O Canal in Georgetown. According to MPD Det. Kathy Jackson's testimony during a preliminary hearing, Elarch taunted the men with homophobic slurs before instructing Abdulgader to hit one of them. Abdulgader also plead guilty to one count of ''possession of a prohibited weapon.''

According to an MPD release, ''Because Abdulgader committed a bias crime, his maximum penalty on that charge is enhanced by District of Columbia law by [one and a half] times. ... Abdulgader faces a maximum punishment of [five and a half] years' incarceration.''

Abdulgader's sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 6. He remains in custody.