A be aware referencing the latest terrorist assaults in New Zealand was discovered on the scene of a doable arson fireplace at a Southern California mosque, police stated Sunday.
No one was damage, and members of the Islamic Middle of Escondido have been in a position to extinguish the small blaze earlier than firefighters round three:15 a.m., officers stated.
The incident was being investigated as arson and a doable hate crime, stated police within the metropolis about 30 miles (48 kilometres) north of downtown San Diego.
A be aware was discovered within the car parking zone referencing the shootings this month that killed 50 folks at mosques within the metropolis of Christchurch, New Zealand, police Lt. Chris Lick stated. He didn’t elaborate in regards to the contents of the be aware.
Investigators didn’t launch details about a suspect.
The fireplace prompted minor harm to the constructing’s exterior.
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Seven folks have been contained in the mosque on the time of the fireplace, police informed the KNSD TV station . They have been in a position to put out the fireplace with a hearth extinguisher earlier than firefighters arrived on the scene, KNSD reported.
“There are individuals who sleep there in a single day,” member Yusef Miller stated. “They heard the sounds, they smelled some humorous smells, and there was a letter saying one thing connecting to New Zealand on the similar time. So, this made everyone particularly on edge.”
The Escondido mosque was created 4 years in the past and serves a number of hundred folks within the metropolis of about 143,000 residents, Miller stated.
He informed KNSD that worshippers are undeterred.
“We received’t cease praying,” Miller stated. “We received’t cease gathering.”
Dustin Craun, the pinnacle of the Council of American-Islamic Relations in San Diego, stated his civil rights group stands with the mosque.
“It’s disturbing sufficient that some sick particular person would try to burn a home of worship to the bottom, however referencing the slayings in New Zealand is past the pale,” he stated in an announcement. “Whereas the vast majority of humanity has responded to the tragedy to attract nearer to at least one one other and refute hatred, a violent and hate-filled minority seeks additional divisions.
“We’re grateful that somebody was contained in the mosque and was in a position to act shortly to place the fireplace out. We ask anybody with info to return ahead and speak to the Escondido Police Division. We stand in solidarity with our neighborhood members who attend the Islamic Middle of Escondido.”