The FBI admitted Thursday that Dahir Ahmed Adan, the man who stabbed 10 people at a mall in Minnesota while shouting “Allahu akbar,” had recently become intensely interested in Islam to the point of radicalization.
FBI Special Agent Rick Thornton said Thursday at a news conference that “We were told (he) had not previously shown an interest in religion,” but that appears not to have been true at all, the Associated Press reports.
In fact, 20-year-old Adan, a Somali, had recently dropped out of college, withdrawn from friends and family and pressured female relatives to become more religious, following his focus on Islam.
The FBI, meanwhile, is still investigating Adan’s background and social media accounts, though it hasn’t been able to gain access to his iPhone.
Authorities have not yet independently confirmed Adan’s ties to extremist groups. Shortly after Adan went on a stabbing rampage with two steak knives at a Minnesota mall on Sept. 17, the Islamic State’s news agency stated that Adan was a soldier on behalf of the group. Adan shouted “Allahu akbar” and “Islam, Islam” during his vicious attack.
An off-duty police officer ended Adan’s terror by gunning him down six times, killing him in the process. The Stearns Country Attorney announced Thursday that off-duty officer Jason Falconer was justified in his actions.
Falconer was at the right place at the right time. He was on his way to buy a gift for his daughter when Adan approached him and asked if he was a Muslim. Falconer told him to put the steak knives down. Adan refused, and so Falconer shot him six times.
Last week, FBI Director James Comey confirmed at a House Committee on the Judiciary hearing that Adan seemed to have been inspired by radical Islam.
Minnesota is home to the United States’ largest Somali community, and radicalization of Somalis is a serious issue, although Gov. Mark Dayton last year downplayed the costs of vibrant diversity and told diversity skeptics that if they disagree with the flood of new immigrants coming into Minnesota, they should just leave. Comey recently noted that Somalis seem particularly susceptible to recruitment efforts for radical Islamic terror.
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