Man’s sentence reduced after judge is accused of anti-Islamic bias


An Iranian-American’s five-month jail sentence was reduced after he filed an appeal accusing a Sandy Springs judge who sentenced him of harboring anti-Islamic bias.

Municipal Court Judge Sharon Dickson recently came under fire for remarks she made during Fazial Azizan’s sentencing last year. According to court transcripts, Dickson referenced the nursing student’s heritage multiple times, questioned his respect for women and called him “despicable.”

The city of Sandy Springs decided Friday to alter the judge’s ruling.

“We welcome the city’s decision to overturn the judge’s sentence, which was fatally tainted by her expression of bigotry,” said Edward Ahmed Mitchell, the director of the Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights advocacy group. “This should not have been a hard decision for Sandy Springs to make. Bigotry has no place in our society, much less our courts. When a judge attacks a defendant’s national origin from the bench, that judge’s ruling cannot stand.”

Azizan was on trial for misdemeanor disorderly conduct after a crash in his Uber car last spring. A customer was in the back seat at the time of the accident near the intersection of Hammond and Glenridge drives, Channel 2 Action News reported.

Azizan told the news station he was not at fault, but after being treated for his injuries, he was detained.

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