A 73-year-old Christian minister and landlord who apparently was wrongly convicted of pushing her unruly and law-breaking Muslim tenant down a small flight of stairs must spend six months in jail and comply with a judge’s unconstitutional order that she learn about the Islamic faith as part of her probation, the state’s highest court concluded today.
Boston GlobeThe Supreme Judicial Court left intact the probation imposed on Daisy Obi by Somerville District Court Judge Paul M. Yee Jr.
It is unlikely thatPastor Daisy Obi, a 73-year-old ordained minister from Nigeria, threw the young Islamic supremacist Gihan Suliman down the stairs. But what is certain is that the Muslim had as many as 15 other Muslims illegally living in the apartment at one time.
What’s more, the woman accused of saying anti-Muslim things and “pushing a Muslim tenant down the stairs” rents to several Muslims. So clearly she is not anti-Muslim. And secondly, the alleged victim had upwards of 15 people living her the apartment, so of course the landlord would complain. Suliman did not respond to messages left at her home and workplace.
Suliman said Obi accused her of ringing her doorbell, shouted at her and pushed her. Suliman said she fell backward down some stairs, hitting her face on the banister, cutting her lip and tearing a ligament in her shoulder.
Obi vehemently denied making any anti-Muslim statements to Suliman or pushing her. She testified she was inside her apartment praying when she heard a knock at the door from the police, who arrested her.
Yee ordered that Obi attend “an introductory class on Islam, and to provide her probation officer with written documentation that she had done so.’’
She is also ordered to provide all future tenants with a written notice that she had been convicted of criminally assaulting one of her tenants. “The condition imposed on the defendant in this case is directed at ensuring that future tenants are aware of the risk they take by agreeing to rent one of the defendant’s apartments,’’ Lenk wrote.
“I want you to learn about the Muslim faith,” Yee said. “I want you to enroll and attend an introductory course on Islam. “I do want you to understand people of the Muslim faith, and they need to be respected. They may worship Allah … but they need to be respected.” (Respected for what – THIS?)
He also ordered Obi to serve six months in the Middlesex County House of Correction. Obi was 71 years old and had no prior criminal record when convicted. Her sentence has been stayed pending resolution of her appeals.
Obi said in a phone interview that she believes Suliman had a vendetta against her because she refused to allow her to let more people live in her apartment.