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CAIR Seeks Hate Crime Charge for Anti-Muslim Threats to Rhode Island Store Clerk

CAIR logo(WASHINGTON, D.C., 12/29/2015) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) , the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called for hate crime charges to be brought against a Rhode Island man arrested for allegedly threatening to kill a store clerk in that state.

Thomas Giese, who was captured on a surveillance camera lashing out at a convenience store clerk about his religion and threatening to kill him, was arrested for misdemeanor disorderly conduct. “We don’t want Muslim stores in our neighborhood. No Muslim stores in our neighborhood,†said Giese.

SEE: Man Charged After Christmas Eve Anti-Muslim Tirade

“This reported bias-motivated threat of deadly violence should be treated with the seriousness it deserves and prosecutors should consider bringing appropriate hate crime charges and sentencing enhancements against the alleged perpetrator,†said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper.

Earlier today, called for a state and federal hate crime investigation of the desecration of a Nevada mosque, the latest such incident in a recent spike in attacks on Muslim houses of worship nationwide.

SEE: CAIR Seeks Hate Crime Probe of Nevada Mosque Desecration 

Over the weekend, CAIR called on law enforcement authorities to investigate an apparent firebombing of mosque in Tracy, Calif., and arson at a mosque in southwest Houston.

CAIR: Authorities Investigating Christmastime Attacks on Mosques in Texas and California

Earlier this month, a suspect was arrested for allegedly firebombing another California mosque.

CAIR: Person Detained in Fire at Coachella Mosque; Concern Over Shooting Backlash Mounts

Last week, CAIR’s San Francisco Bay Area chapter questioned the release of a Richmond, Calif., man who allegedly threatened and plotted to bomb local Muslims.

Video: CAIR-SFBA Shocked at Release of Suspect Who Threatened, Plotted to Bomb Muslims

CAIR recently released a preliminary report on more than 70 incidents targeting American mosques and religious institutions in 2015 that shows a greater frequency of damage, destruction, vandalism, and intimidation than in any other year since CAIR started tracking such cases in 2009.

CAIR Report: Number of Incidents Targeting U.S. Mosque in 2015 Highest Ever Recorded

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.

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CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, ihooper@cair.com

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