Press Releases

CAIR-LA Denounces Racist Confrontation Involving Nazi Salute in Torrance

(LOS ANGELES, CA – 7/24/2020) – The Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA), part of the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today denounced an alleged hate crime at a stoplight in Torrance during which two people were the targets of a racist rant. 

According to KTLA/5, Itzel Lopez and her boyfriend were driving home from dinner on Wednesday night and were cut off at a red light at the intersection of Artesia Boulevard and Prairie Avenue. 

The driver and passenger got out of their vehicle and approached Lopez and her boyfriend’s truck, which is when Lopez started recording. 

In the video, a woman was heard saying, “White lives matter b—h,” and making obscene gestures. The man was seen doing a Nazi salute in front of Lopez’s boyfriend, who is Black. The man went back to his vehicle to grab something from his vehicle and approached Lopez’s boyfriend, who was in the driver’s seat. 

Lopez and her boyfriend were able to record the truck’s license plate number and report it to police. Torrance police are now investigating the incident as a hate crime. 

SEE: ‘We were in shock’: Cellphone video of racist confrontation on Torrance street sparks hate crime investigation 

In a statement, CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush said: 

“We are grateful neither the woman who filmed this incident nor her companion were injured. CAIR-LA welcomes the quick response of the Torrance Police Department to investigate this matter as a hate crime and we stand against hatred and xenophobia in all forms. 

“We have warned that normalizing hate speech leads directly to hate threats and hate attacks. The increase in threats and violence are the direct result of irresponsible attacks from the highest levels made against members of marginalized communities.” 

Ayloush urged community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR-LA’s Civil Rights Department at 714-776-1177 or by filing a report at:

CAIR-LA is Southern California’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.  


CONTACT: CAIR-LA Communications Manager Eugene W. Fields, 714-851-4851 or 

Share on facebook
Share on twitter