Surveillance video released in mosque shoe theft
PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. (WSVN) -- A man was captured on surveillance video stealing a pair of shoes outside a South Florida mosque.
The footage shows the man riding his bicycle and practically going shopping for a pair of shoes during Tuesday night's prayer service at the Pembroke Pines Islamic Center.
Worshipers kneel on the ground in prayer and leave their shoes outside on a rack before entering the mosque.
Khizr Mohamed's shoes were stolen from the rack. "Yeah, from all places to church, well, someone probably really needed it," said Mohamed.
Mohamed was in religious class when the thief searched the rack and grabbed his $150 Nike Air Jordans and rode away.
Mohamed realized they were gone when he was preparing to leave. "I was searching and I thought someone put it in the garbage can, one of my friends was messing with me, but they were gone," he said.
Shoes at the center have been taken several times in recent months. The more expensive shoes on the rack are always the ones stolen. "The way he did it seems as though he has done it before. He knew exactly what he was going to do," said Islamic Center Head Shafayad Mohamed.
Muslims, by rule, remove their shoes before entering a mosque. The shoes are considered unclean and the center has no plans on bringing the rack inside.
The worshippers are hoping the thief's conscience gets the best of him and leaves them to pray in peace. "That shows how bad things are," said Shafayad.
If you have any information on this shoe thief, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.
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