CHICAGO (CBS) — Chilling video of a security scare at a Chicago mosque shows a man with a gun who got inside after lying to security Wednesday. The man even pretended to pray.
The scare couldn’t have come at a busier time, the night recognized as the holiest day of the year for the Muslim faith.
Hundreds of people were praying inside the Makki Masjid walls in Albany Park Friday night, but outside extra security was on the lookout.
The armed man made his way inside after waving off security and claiming to be a retired Chicago police officer and retired military, according to the director of security Shabbir Patel.
The alleged retired officer wore a kufi cap on his head, took off his shoes and entered through the back of the room, seemingly there to pray but out of sync with the other worshippers and struggling to stand on his own.
“Intoxicated with a gun,” said Patel.
Patel told CBS 2 the worship center is experiencing larger turnouts than usual lately with Ramadan under way.
Wednesday night while the man was armed and inside the gun-free building there were also 300 adults and 150 kids who were playing upstairs, according to Patel.
And once word reached the Muslim community worshippers were worried.
“Oh my God, I was praying with a guy with a loaded gun,” Patel said. “I was busy on the phone for four hours. People were actually scared and crying.”
So faith leaders filed a police report and informed the man he could not return.
Then at 10:45 the next night, the man came back insisting he wanted to go back in, Patel said.
Only then officers were on hand.
The man was caught on cell phone video telling police, “I’m a white Islamic like Malcom X.”
When police said he came with a gun the man replied, “Yeah, that was yesterday.”
Patel said he not only called in extra security but was going with a “full, visible force.” He contacted both Chicago police and the Cook County Sheriff’s Department, asking them to remain on alert as Ramadan continues.
CBS 2 reached out to Chicago police for information on whether the trespasser is in fact a retired officer or if he’s even allowed to carry a gun but has not heard back.