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CAIR-LA Welcomes Arrest of Suspect in Stabbing of Muslim Near Simi Valley Mosque

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Simi Valley Police Say Man Who Stabbed a Worshiper Near a Mosque is Still on the Loose (LA Times)

Full details here.

(ANAHEIM, CA, 12/12/16) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations of the Greater Los Angeles Area (CAIR-LA) today welcomed the arrest of a man allegedly involved in a bias-motivated stabbing near a Simi Valley Mosque.

Law enforcement authorities say 29-year-old John Matteson was arrested on suspicion of a hate crime, criminal threats, performing a felony violation of civil rights and disturbing peace for engaging in a verbal altercation and getting into a fight in which he stabbed a worshiper near the mosque on Saturday. The victim was taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and is in stable condition. Matteson is tentatively scheduled for a court appearance on Tuesday.

SEE: Man Stabs Worshiper Near Simi Valley Mosque in Hate Crime, Police Allege | LA Times

“We commend the Simi Valley Police Department and the other law enforcement agencies involved in apprehending the suspect,” said CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush. “With the recent spike in hate crimes across the nation, prompt and professional law enforcements' actions in response to these incidents sends the message that violence targeting the Muslim community will not be tolerated.â€

The stabbing comes amid a national surge in anti-Muslim crimes, which jumped 67 percent in 2015, according to FBI statistics.

SEE: CAIR Says FBI Report of Sharp Jump in Anti-Muslim Hate Crimes Should Push Nation’s Leaders to Reject Islamophobia

CAIR-LA has received a number of reports of hate incidents against Muslims in the Southern California area. In light of those reports, CAIR-LA is advising the American Muslim community to take all threats seriously and ensure that relevant law enforcement authorities are contacted in a timely manner. CAIR-LA also urges community members to be extra vigilant and take precautionary safety measures and reporting any suspicious activity or individuals to the local police, and to the mosque or organization that it involves.

To report Islamophobia, hate incidents or hate crimes contact CAIR-LA's Civil Rights Department call (714) 776-1177 or submit this online form:

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.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR-LA Communications Coordinator Ojaala Ahmad,, 714-851-4851

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