A 30-year-old man was arrested last week after he allegedly urinated outside an Astoria mosque during a prayer session, city Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said.
Omar Rivera, who lives at 1570 Jerome Ave. in the Bronx, allegedly showed up intoxicated at the Al-Imam Mosque, at 24-30 Steinway St. in Astoria, around 6:30 p.m. Aug. 25 and urinated on the mosque’s floor, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.
Several men at the mosque subdued Rivera until police showed up at the scene, Kelly said.
He was arraigned last Thursday on charges of throwing offensive matter and criminal trespass, the DA said. His bail was set at $1,500.
The defendant was allegedly carrying a beer bottle and began to shout loudly, Kelly said. But the NYPD is viewing the disturbance as an “isolated incident” and not related to the recent attack on Manhattan cab driver Ahmed Sharif, he said.
“We don’t see this as a trend,” Kelly said during a news conference last week at City Hall on the cabbie attack. “He ranted, but did not give any anti-Muslim statements. We look at all these crimes and call them possible bias crimes, so we can do a full investigation.”
The mosque would not comment on the incident, but two worshipers who would not give their names said they had heard about a man being arrested after “urinating outside the mosque.”
Last week, a 21-year-old from Brewster, N.Y. was arrested after he allegedly stabbed a 43-year-old Bangladeshi cab driver from Jamaica in Manhattan.
Michael Enright, who is a student at Manhattan’s School of Visual Arts, was arraigned on several charges, including attempted murder as a hate crime, after he is alleged to have stabbed Ahmad Sharif, 43, around p.m. after asking him about his religious beliefs.
Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 718-260-4566.
©2010 Community News Group
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