Mosque in Fairfax County Vandalized

Rocks thrown through custom windows

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A mosque in Fairfax County suffered thousands of dollars in damage. News4's Megan McGrath has the story. (Published Tuesday, Jan 31, 2012)

    Construction crews should be putting the finishing touches on the Mubarak Blessed Mosque in Chantilly. Instead, they are repairing the work of vandals.

    Sometime between Sunday evening and 6 a.m. Monday morning, the mosque was pelted with stones and masonry blocks. Nearly all the custom made windows and glass doors on the first floor were shattered.  Damage has been estimated at $60,000.

    Investigators found beer and liquor bottles in the woods behind the mosque, and they believe teenagers may be responsible.

    "It is very sad," said the mosque's general secretary, Usman Ghumman.  "But at the same time, our community is very resilient.  We have asked our community members to fervently pray that we are able to overcome this hurdle."

    Mubarak Blessed Mosque has been under construction for a year, and was scheduled to open in just weeks.

    Jerrold Foltz, pastor at the Wellspring United Church of Christ, said acts like this are an affront to area's entire religious community.  "Its an insult to the whole religious establishment," Foltz said, "whether its a church or a mosque or a synagogue."

    Investigators say there is no evidence that it is a hate crime - nothing was taken and no graffiti was left behind.  However, because of the extent of the damage, those responsible face felony charges.

    The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has asked the FBI to investigate the possibility of a bias motive in the incident.