A Washington-based Muslim civil rights group is now asking local and federal authorities to look into the vandalism of a Rock Hill mosque this week.
Sometime early Tuesday morning, Rock Hill police say one or more vandals left $1,200 in damage to the Islamic Center of South Carolina on Cherry Road in Rock Hill.
Police reports show officers found sand and cigarette butts directly below a broken window. The report says it appears someone attempted to throw a concrete ashtray to the glass.
In the days since, the Council on American Islamic Relations has requested authorities investigate a possible motive behind the crime, the suspected arson of a mosque in Joplin, Missouri, and possible hate vandalism of a Muslim family in Texas.
“Whenever a house of worship is targeted in this manner, state and national law enforcement authorities should consider the possibility of a bias motive,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper.
Hooper said CAIR is urging Muslim individuals and institutions to review advice on security procedures contained in its “Muslim Community Safety Kit.”
Rock Hill Police spokesman Lt. Brent Allmon tells WRHI the case of Tuesday’s vandalism is administratively closed to due a lack of leads, but could be reopened it if additional details emerge.