Murfreesboro men indicted in Islamic Center vandalism

Staff Reports • Sep 29, 2017 at 2:00 PM

Two Murfreesboro men were indicted for vandalizing the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro.

A federal grand jury in Nashville indicted Charles Dwight Stout III, 19, and Thomas Avery Gibbs, both of Murfreesboro, with conspiring to commit a civil rights violation and committing a civil rights violation through damaging and defacing the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro.

Donald Cochran, U.S. attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, and Michael T. Gavin, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Memphis Field Office, announced the indictments.

The indictments allege following the vandalism, Stout destroyed the clothing he wore and permanently deleted pictures of the vandalism he took with his cellphone. Stout was previously indicted Aug. 30 for obstructing a federal investigation by deleting photographic evidence.

Members of the Islamic Center discovered the vandalism when they attended Morning Prayer on July 10 and immediately reported it to law enforcement.

If convicted, both men face up to a year in prison. An indictment is merely an accusation and is not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law. 

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