🔵 The Rutgers Center for Islamic Life was vandalized on the last day of Ramadan

🔵 Pieces of art and a Palestinian flag were damaged in the April 10 incident

🔵 One person not affiliated with Rutgers faces federal charges

NEW BRUNSWICK — An arrest was made in the vandalism that damaged several items of value at the Rutgers Center for Islamic Life on the last day of Ramadan.

Center spokeswoman Atiya Aftab said art pieces with Quranic verses were destroyed, a Palestinian flag was ripped off its pole, windows were shattered, TVs were vandalized, and printers were broken in the attack on the early hours of April 10, the holiday of  Eid al-Fitr.

No one was at the center at the time of the attack

Rutgers University police said Jacob Beacher, 24, of New Brunswick, was charged with federal charges of damage to religious property and making fraudulent statements.  He is being held at a federal prison. State charges are pending.

He remains in federal custody. Beacher is not affiliated with Rutgers.

“The CILRU has been a leading voice in advocating for Muslim students on campus and has expressed unequivocal support for Palestine actions and advocacy at Rutgers University," Council on American-Islamic Relations-New Jersey spokeswoman Dina Sayedahmed said in a statement.

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Vandalism at the Rutgers Center for Islamic Life 4/10/24
Vandalism at the Rutgers Center for Islamic Life 4/10/24 (CILRU via ABC 7 Eyewitness News)

Tensions at Rutgers

Rutgers Police Department asked anyone with information about the vandalism or who may have been in the area at the time to contact them at 848-932-8025.

While the Rutgers campuses have not experienced the large pro-Palestinian protests seen at Columbia University students have expressed support in a referendum on whether the school should withdraw investments in Israel and to cancel the school’s partnership with Tel Aviv University.

The school's Board of Trustees have not taken action following the vote.

Previous reporting by Jen Ursillo was used in this report

(Includes material Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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