Nevada police detain 7 Muslims for praying in parking lot
After stopping, the men prayed next to their vehicle. Two patrol officers soon arrived followed by a police sergeant, according to a Henderson police spokesman.
“We got a call from a citizen saying that seven suspicious males were in a parking lot engaging in suspicious behavior,” said Officer Todd Rasmussen, a department spokesman.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations alleges that one of the officers said he was responding to a call about a “bunch of guys doing weird moves.”
He was referring to their prayers.
“The scope and length of the stop was not reasonable under the circumstances, nor did it serve any legitimate investigative purpose,” Ameena Qazi, a staff attorney for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, wrote to Henderson Police Chief Jutta Chambers.
In addition to an investigation, the Muslim civil rights group has asked for disciplinary action against the officers, changes in officer training and compensation for the emotional distress suffered by the Muslim men.
The department’s internal affairs bureau has begun an investigation into the incident, Rasmussen said.