Chicago police this morning are questioning two teenagers who were arrested overnight inside a vandalized mosque on the North Side.

A witness who called 911 saw the two boys, 16 and 17, enter the Jame Masjid in the 6300 block of North Maplewood Avenue around 12:45 a.m. and later saw that one of the mosque’s windows had been forced open, said Rogers Park District Lt. Ken Barnas.

Police officers found damage to the interior of the mosque, including spray-painted graffiti on the walls, according to Barnas.

The two teens were found hiding beneath a stairwell. Neither had been charged as of this morning, but Barnas said the case is being handled as a burglary by Belmont Area detectives.

He said the graffiti appears to be related to gang activity, and police don’t think it was specifically anti-Muslim.

“The mosque leaders are going to come in and see if anything is missing,” Barnas said.

He said one of the boys is from Rogers Park and the other resides in the south suburbs.


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