New Delhi (Sputnik): A teenage girl of Indian descent is battling for her life due to an ill-fated incident involving an African-American war veteran who ploughed down an Indian family in California, US with his car thinking them to be Muslims, according to a media report in India Today.
The hate crime perpetrator, Isiah Peoples, was charged with attempted murder at a San Jose court on Friday.
The driver of the car, Isiah Peoples "intentionally targeted the victims based on their race and his belief that they were of the Muslim faith", Sunnyvale police chief Phan Ngo said according to local TV station ABC7, added the report.
The 13-year-old girl Drishti is in a coma and is in serious condition. Her father and 9-year-old brother were also injured in the incident that took place on Tuesday. She is a student at Sunnyvale Middle School and is in the seventh grade. The incident left her with a dangerous swelling in her brain. Doctors have removed the left side of her skull to relieve pressure, the media report added.
Meanwhile, Peoples' defence lawyer, Chuck Smith, has claimed that the act was not intentional and was a result of a "mental disorder or defect".
Peoples' mother and brother claimed that the accused has suffered from post traumatic stress disorder since his return from active duty in Iraq. He was even hospitalised for psychiatric issues at one point, they claimed.