Islamic group asks feds to probe hate crime

By Philip Townsend and WFAA
Source: WFAA

DALLAS — Surveillance video shows what police are now calling a hate crime in Dallas.

Investigators believe 30-year-old Anthony Torres opened fire at Omar's Wheel and Tires on Christmas Eve because of his hatred toward Muslims.

Torres is the alleged shooter in the video, who is seen firing off several rounds.

Enrique Garcia-Mendoza, 25, was killed, and several others were injured, including employee Bryan Vazquez.

"When I turned around to look at him, that's when he pulled it out and started shooting at me," Vazquez said.

On Friday, police categorized the shooting as a hate crime.

Employees told investigators Torres visited the shop a week before the shooting, and that he made several anti-Muslim comments before leaving.

The Dallas-Fort Worth Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations has now formally requested the involvement of federal law enforcement.

CAIR Executive Director Alia Salem said Saturday the organization wants the feds to probe the crime as an act of domestic terrorism.

"We know for almost certain fact, that if this individual was Muslim, this case would automatically be looked at as potential act of domestic terrorism," Salem said.

Dallas police released a statement Saturday evening, saying it had been in contact with federal authorities about the shooting.

"The department considers the incident bias-motivated, and has advised federal authorities as to the circumstances leading to this determination," police said in a statement.