Indiana Man Faces Hate Crime Charges for Arson

Indiana Man Faces Hate Crime Charges for Arson

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Indiana Man Faces Hate Crime Charges for Arson

On October 5, 2012, the US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio announced that criminal hate crimes charges were filed against Randolph Linn of St. Joe, Indiana in connection with the arson that occurred at the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo.  Linn is charged with “intentionally defacing, damaging, and destroying religious real property because of the religious character of that property and with using fire and explosives to commit a felony.”

The fire department was notified of a fire at 4:58 p.m. at the Islamic Center on September 30.  Police and fire firefighters found a gas can in the middle of the Islamic Center’s prayer room , and significant damage and burns occurred before a sprinkler system put out the fire.

Security cameras recorded images of a red SUV in the parking lot around 4:11 p.m. and an older man who was dressed in jeans and camouflage approach the door of the Islamic Center.  The security cameras saw the man enter the building with a firearm and can of gas at 4:54 p.m.   

After law enforcement released the photos on October 1, a woman called in on October 2 and identified the man as Randolph Linn.  She stated that she knew Linn personally and remember him making anti-Muslim comments.  She also directed authorities to an anti-Muslim video on YouTube that was created by Linn.  

Linn was arrested and read his Miranda Right on October 2, and while being booked, he was noted in stating, “[expletive] those Muslims.”

Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division Thomas E. Perez stated, “The Department of Justice will aggressively prosecute persons who attack, deface, or damage houses of worship because of racial or religious animus.  We appreciate the cooperation of state, local, and federal law enforcement in their efforts to ensure that no one in this country is hindered in their ability to worship freely in the manner of their choosing.”

Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

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