An American Muslim family of San Antonio is calling on state and local law enforcement and the FBI to investigate a possible hate crime that ruined their Fourth of July.
Atiya and Tahir Kahn and their family were watching their neighborhood's annual Fourth of July parade Wednesday morning, when a vandal took black spray paint and wrote 'TERRORIST' on their family home in Castle Hills.
Once a neighbor and friend informed the family of the graffiti Tahir quickly grabbed his 'Goof-Off!', and with the help of his neighbors cleaned the offensive message off of the side of his house.
Tahir moved to The United States in 1978, and has been a legal American citizen for 30 years. His four children are American-born and currently attend Texas A&M University. They have lived in their house off Hunters Green for over 18 years.
"Whoever did this is bad and it's not appreciated in the community and neighborhood. Everyone here hated this kind of thing and they were with us, not with them. They know that were good neighbors, and we take care of each other," said Tahir.
Tahir is a member of the San Antonio chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SA), and immediately called them for help.
"I want to take it to a bigger authority, because that's not some small thing where I can ignore it. It's a hate crime and I do not want it to happen to someone else," said Tahir.
"Routinely our office informs the FBI also to probe in the cases, because around the nation the hate crimes against Muslims are rising," said CAIR-SA President Sarwat Husain.
The Kahns informed the police of the vandalism incident and filed a report. However, their home was attacked again Wednesday night. Tahir and the rest of the family had gone downtown to watch the fireworks show and Atiya was home alone, when someone came banging on the door and ringing the doorbell.
"And when she came outside to look, there were a whole bunch of firecrackers hanging outside the door and they started firing," said Tahir.
CAIR-SA is urging local law enforcement authorities and the FBI to investigate these incidents as apparent hate crimes, because of the apparent bias motive for the graffiti, and because the home was targeted twice in a short period of time.
"Muslims, like any other minority group, are tax paying, law abiding citizens serving the community. We are paying our dues to the country and to the communities. We are part of the United States. Hurting Muslims is like hurting any other American," said Husain.
Meanwhile, Tahir claims the community's Neighborhood Watch is looking to enhance its patrol.
"Any day is the wrong day to do these kinds of things," said Tahir. "But they're particularly wrong on the Fourth of July when people are celebrating and enjoying barbecuing and those kinds of things. It ruined our whole day."