Gov. Dayton tours burglarized Islamic center

Governor Dayton
Governor Mark Dayton (second from right) and Lt. Gov. Tina Smith and leaders of the Umatul Islam Center speak with reporters outside the mosque.
Matt Sepic | MPR News

On Sunday, Governor Mark Dayton toured a Minneapolis Islamic center that was vandalized last week.

Someone broke into the building late Wednesday and smashed several interior doors and a window at the Umatul Islam Center. A board member at the center estimates that the building suffered about $5,000 in damage from the burglary and vandalism.

Broken window
A broken plate glass window is among an estimated $5,000 worth of damage at the Umatul Islam Center in Minneapolis.
Matt Sepic | MPR News

Dayton says he stands in solidarity with Minnesota's Somali-American community and calls the vandalism cowardly.

"Our Somali citizens are welcome here. They have every right to be here. They have absolutely every right to worship as they choose. This is very un-Minnesotan. It's very un-American," Dayton said.

Minneapolis Police Department spokesman John Elder said investigators collected evidence at the scene and have made strong headway in identifying a suspect.

The Umatul Islam Center is located near Interstate-35W and Lake Street.

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