Connecticut Man Receives 5-YEARS SENTENCE for Attempted SEXUAL ASSAULT on Muslim State Representative


A man who attacked a Muslim state representative outside a prayer service in Connecticut was sentenced to five years in prison on Tuesday for attempted sexual assault and other crimes, a punishment that the lawmaker previously criticized as overly light.

Andrey Desmond, 31, was sentenced in Hartford Superior Court for the June 2023 assault on Rep. Maryam Khan, the state’s first Muslim member of the House. In April, Desmond pled guilty to attempted third-degree sexual assault, attempted first-degree strangling, and risk of injury to a juvenile, all felonies. Following his prison sentence, Desmond must serve parole, register as a sex offender, and obtain mental health therapy.

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Desmond’s public attorney, John Stawicki, stated in court that the defendant regretted his acts and had fought with mental illness, including schizophrenia. Desmond stated that “the events that occurred were out of my control.” “I had no self-control.” Khan, a Democrat from Hartford’s Windsor neighborhood, said in a statement that the assault “highlighted serious gaps in our mental health care system and victim safety and protection.”

“What happened to me just over a year ago was tragic and will leave a mark on my life and all of those involved,” Khan stated. “But I’m glad to see some sort of justice today. It is critical to recognize that what happened that day is considerably more common than we would like to accept.”

Court records reveal that Desmond, who lived in New Britain, had a history of mental illness. Following a court-ordered evaluation, he was deemed competent to stand trial.

Khan had advocated for hate crime charges. She was attacked after attending a service at Hartford’s XL Center arena with her family to commemorate Eid al-Adha, the end of Muslims’ traditional journey to Mecca.

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She claims she and her family, including her 15-year-old daughter, were shooting photos outside the arena when Desmond approached and stated he “intended to have sexual relations” with one of them. Desmond then followed them inside, and Khan claims he began to approach her in particular, pulling her face and clothes and demanding a kiss. He followed her back outside and attempted to grasp her face again, she claimed, becoming enraged when she “dodged him.” She claimed he smacked her in the face and then put her in a “chokehold,” holding out his hand and pretending to have a gun before slamming her to the ground.

Khan said she suffered a concussion and hurt her right arm and shoulder.

The Associated Press does not typically identify people who report attempted sexual assaults unless they publicly identify themselves, as Khan has.

Desmond was pursued and apprehended by two bystanders before police came and detained him. One of the onlookers, a war veteran, was charged with misdemeanor assault and was approved for a pretrial diversion program that will have the charge dismissed.

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