St. Louis Public Radio News
3:49 pm
Tue March 4, 2003

FBI Joins Investigation of Hindu Temple Attacks

St. Louis, Mo – The FBI is now helping with the investigation of two recent attacks at the Hindu Temple of St. Louis.

Someone threw two Molotov cocktails in about a week's time at the temple, causing only minor damage. The FBI will see whether there's evidence that these are hate crimes.

The incidents also have other religious groups lending support. Barbara Russell, the executive director of the Interfaith Partnership of Greater St. Louis, says all religious leaders should discuss the incidents, even if it's just the work of pranksters. The Partnership includes congregations from 24 different religions.


"What affects one group affects everyone," says Russell. "We really need to talk to our teenagers and let them know how it frightens people, how it affects the people they target and also how it affects them and makes them look like hate groups even when they're not."

There have also been reports of similar incidents at Hindu temples in Kansas City and Chicago.