Reward Offered in Melbourne Mosque Shooting Case

September 26, 2006

Source: Florida Today

On September 26, 2006 Florida Today reported, "Local and federal authorities today are turning to the public with a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the sniper who fired on a south Melbourne mosque Friday night. Melbourne police today also released a description of a man wearing jeans and a dark-colored T-shirt spotted hiding in the bushes across the street from the mosque in another incident involving an air gun on Sept. 18. 'If anybody knows anything or somebody matching the description in the first incident, please come forward,' said Jill Frederiksen, spokeswoman for the Melbourne Police Department. 'We're considering this person as dangerous, as any individual who would stand across from a mosque and open fire.' In the Sept. 18 incident, several pellets from an air rifle were heard ricocheting off the Islamic worship hall. Friday night, the start of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, someone fired five bullets at the mosque as a 59-year-old worshipper stepped out on the south side of the building to talk on a cellular phone. Police do not know if it was related to the earlier air-gun shooting, or if the shooter harbored anti-Islamic sentiments that pushed him to target the mosque. Either way, Friday's shooting was the third incident to take at the mosque in less than a year, escalating from graffiti of a stick-figure crucifix left behind on a wall to gunfire... Prayer services at the mosque, which draws up to 400 worshippers for weekly gatherings, continue as Melbourne police stepped up patrols and surveillance of the surrounding woods."