(DALLAS/FORT WORTH, TX, 2/17/16) â€“ The Dallas/Fort Worth chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-DFW) today welcomed the arrest of Anthony Paz Torres, who allegedly carried out a deadly Christmas Eve shooting in which he reportedly targeted his victims because he believed they were Muslim.
Torres was freed in January, was re-arrested in February on another charge and was again released. He was arrested again this morning on outstanding bond forfeiture warrants.
CAIR-DFW held a news conference yesterday to express community safety concerns about his release.
Video: CAIR-Dallas Demands Answers After Release of Domestic Terror Suspect Who Allegedly Targeted Muslims
Last month, CAIR-DFW called for the attack to be treated as an act of domestic terrorism.
Video: CAIR Says Dallas Anti-Muslim Murder Would Be Called 'Terrorism' If Shooter was Islamic
In a statement, CAIR-DFW Executive Director Alia Salem said:
â€œWe welcome the news of the arrest of Anthony Paz Torres this morning. The victims of this heinous attack, the Muslim community and all area residents can breathe a little easier knowing the alleged assailant is behind bars. Yesterday, CAIR-DFW held a press conference to express outrage at his release and subsequent arrest and re-release.
“We applaud the efforts of the Dallas Police Department and the U.S. Marshal's who banded together to get this suspect back into custody. Now we must focus our efforts on ensuring that he remains in custody pending trial.”
â€œCAIR-DFW is planning to work with the district attorneyâ€™s office and the mayor's office to do everything we can on behalf of the victims and to ensure an outcome that provides for the safety of all Dallas residents.â€
Torres, who wore a traditional Jewish cap (yarmulke), had reportedly visited Omarâ€™s Tire ShopÂ in Dallas two weeks prior to the attack. During that visit, he allegedly asked whether â€œOmarâ€ is Muslim. When told that he is, the alleged attacker reportedly replied, â€œAll these Muslims, theyâ€™re making problems for us,â€ and told employees at the site, â€œIâ€™m gonna come back and kill all of yâ€™all.â€
During the December 24 attack, Torres reportedly shouted â€œMuslimâ€ as he fired, killing one person and critically injuring another. Several other people suffered minor injuries. Torres was charged with murder and aggravated assault and was being held on $500,000 bail.
CAIR has reported an unprecedented spike in anti-Muslim attacks since the Paris terror attacks, the San Bernardino shootings and Donald Trumpâ€™s inflammatory anti-Muslim rhetoric.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
– END –
CONTACT: National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, email@example.com