Truckdriver shot because gunmen apparently thought he was an Arab

| 5/22/2003

Avtar Singh, 52, a Phoenix truckdriver who is a member of the Sikh religion, was shot Monday, apparently because he appeared Middle Eastern to his shooters, The Associated Press reported.

Sikh men, who mostly hail from India, typically wear a blue turban and an untrimmed beard. They have been frequently mistaken for Muslims in the aftermath of September 11, 2001.

According to press reports, shortly after Singh parked his 18-wheeler Monday, two white men in a pickup drove up, started yelling at Singh to "go back to where you belong to," and then shot him. The trucker was struck in the leg and abdomen, The AP reported.

Singh was taken to a Phoenix hospital. Police are investigating.