Video: Islamic Center of Greater Toledo reveals damage from arson
Fri, 05 Oct 2012 00:21:07 GMT —
On Thursday, members of the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo gave the media a look at the damage caused by an intentional fire set at the facility on Sunday.
Members, of the Islamic Center, were allowed back into their place of worship for the first time on Wednesday.
Once power was restored to the building, they learned that much more had been lost than they had anticipated.
"Every single room is damaged. Every room is out of commission," President of the Islamic Center Dr. Mahjabeen Islam said.
Though no official damage estimate has been given, Islam believes that "most of the material is not salvageable."
In the mosque's main prayer room, where is fire is believed to have been set, a large portion of the carpet is torched.
"There is a smell of gasoline," Islam described.
Smoke and water damage also covers the walls, floors and ceiling tiles of many other rooms in the facility.
Manal Elshiekh, a 2nd grade teacher at the Islamic Center, said almost everything in her classroom "was destroyed".
"Everything, even the materials we did with our own hands, the kids artwork, and materials got destroyed,â?? Elshiekh said as she fought back tears.
Islam says that in the week since the fire, members have received an outpouring of support from people in both the Islamic and non-Islamic Communities.
The Islamic Center President adds that she hopes the incident will also unite the community to call for justice in the case she considers an "attack on Muslims and "a hate crime".
"People who harbor this hatred need to be marginalized and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law," Islam said.
An Indiana man, authorities say was identified using surveillance video taken from the Islamic Center, has been arrested in the case.
52-year-old Randy Linn is now charged with two counts of arson, aggravated battery and carrying a concealed weapon.