Video: Bible thrown into US mosque, hate crime suspected

Fort Collins (US): Police in Colorado arrested a 35-year-old man suspected of throwing Bible in a prayer room after vandalizing the Fort Collins Islamic Center on Sunday.

Joseph Giaquinto was accused of throwing rocks and bricks at the mosques doors and windows and damaging the furniture inside the Islamic Center, police said.

Police released two clips of surveillance video of the incident that captured the vandalism took place on Sunday in a mosque near Colorado State University.

The surveillance footage shows a suspect wearing a hoodie picking up a paving stone and walking away and in another, he kicks a door.

The images shared by ICFC on Facebook shows shattered windows, damaged rear doors.

The vandalism prompted the center to cancel religious classes but also led to an outpouring of support. About 1,000 people gathered at the mosque for a rally of support organized by a rabbi Sunday evening.

Local officials condemned the attack on Twitter.

“The vandalism that occurred at the Islamic Center in Ft. Collins is unacceptable. It’s time for us to stand in unity. These acts must end, ” Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) tweeted.

Police Chief John Hutto, who attended the support rally, said the incident has a “very real impact on our Muslim friends and neighbors.”

“Unacceptable! I urge anyone who has information about this incident to come forward and help us solve this crime. @FCPolice @FCCrimeStopper,” Fort Collins Chief of Police John Hutto tweeted following the incident.

This recent act of vandalism follows “the worst year on record for incidents in which mosques were targets of bias,” according to CAIR.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, had urged police to investigate the case as a possible hate crime.

“Because of the use of a Bible in the vandalism, we would urge state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate the possibility of a bias motive for this attack on a house of worship,” CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper told CNN.

With AP inputs