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Muslim Woman Won’t Remove Scarf For Jail Photo

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(credit: AP)

(credit: AP)

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) – A Muslim woman who refused to remove her headscarf for a Boulder County jail booking photo has been told she’ll have to explain her refusal to a judge.

Maria Hardman, 19, of Boulder, who says she converted to Islam three years ago, pleaded guilty to an alcohol violation and was sentenced to two days in jail plus community service.

She told the Boulder Daily Camera on Friday that removing her headscarf for the photo would violate her beliefs because the Quran calls for Muslim women to wear the scarf except in the company of close family.

A police report said Hardman’s blood-alcohol level was 0.19, more than twice the legal limit, after she crashed her motor-scooter in August.

Alcohol consumption is generally considered to be banned by Islam. Hardman said she drank punch provided at a party without knowing it contained alcohol. She said she left after she found out.

Hardman said she was told to remove the scarf for the photo Wednesday, when she reported to the jail to do paperwork in preparation for a two-day work crew as part of her sentence.

She said her attorney spent three hours trying to persuade officials to let her wear the scarf for the photo. She said jail officials eventually allowed her to leave without taking her photo, but it’s not clear whether she began serving her sentence.

Larry Hank, who oversees the jail, said Hardman will have to explain her refusal to the judge in her case and that jail officials are preparing a motion to explain their reasoning.

The newspaper reported Hardman’s attorney is also working on a motion. No hearing has been scheduled.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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