A Friday morning attack on a San Antonio Muslim center is being investigated as a hate crime.

The vandalism happened in the 1700 block of Hayes Street on the East Side.

Worshippers say vandals who broke into the mosque took some cash and appliances, but also took the sense of peace in the sanctuary.

The mosque looked like a late-night party that was never cleaned up. Paper towels, ribbons and other pieces of trash were strewn about the building.

“They just papered the place,” said Sadeeq Mateen, a Muslim prayer leader, or Imam. “A lot of it is odd, the aluminum foil wrapped around the base of this pillar and these chairs set up in audience fashion, as if something was going on.”

In the mas-jid, or place of prostration and prayer, a safe was overturned and money was taken. A donation box was emptied, except for checks written to the Muslim Mission Center that were scattered on the floor. . .

A pentagram and gang-style symbols scribbled on one of the walls of the sanctuary have police listing this as a hate crime, a crime not often seen in San Antonio.


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