July 15, 2005
Hate Crime Investigations
From the IndyStar.com: "A fire at a Bloomington, (Indiana) mosque early Saturday (July 9) is being investigated as a hate crime by the FBI and members of its Joint Terrorism Task Force. The incident took place at the Islamic Center of Bloomington, where a ground-floor window was broken and an incendiary device was used to start a fire....A burned Quran, Islam's holy text, was found near the broken window, and fire damage inside the building was limited to a wall....In its 2005 annual report, the [Council on American-Islamic Relations in Washington, D.C] noted it had received 141 reports of actual or potential violent anti-Muslim hate crimes in 2004, a 52 percent increase from the 93 reports received in 2003." The mosque plans to hold an open house in a couple weeks to invite the Bloomington community to learn more about the mosque, its memebers, and mission. Story...
And speculation of hate crimes in Los Angeles stemming from a series of freeway shootings: From the LATimes.com: "Activist Najee Ali (director of Project Islamic Hope) called on Monday (July 11) for the FBI to join the investigation into a series of Southland freeway shootings, saying some of the cases were racially motivated hate crimes (consisting of Latinos shooting African-Americans)...although he did not provide information to back up his allegations. Law enforcement officials were quick to say they are unaware of a racial motive in the shootings, which began on the Costa Mesa Freeway in Tustin on March 12. Altogether, four people have died in more than two dozen freeway shootings in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and Ventura counties. LAPD Officer Jason Lee said the investigation into the incidents in the city of Los Angeles is continuing, adding that there is 'no definitive reason to believe these are racially motivated.'" Story... [Mark Godsey]
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