Mosque Case in Court Once Again

Apr 25, 2012

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WMOT) — A lawsuit that seeks to rescind approval for the construction of a Rutherford County mosque will be heard Thursday afternoon in a Murfreesboro courtroom.

The suit was filed on behalf of 17 local residents after the County Planning Commission granted a construction permit for the mosque in May 2010. The plaintiffs tried to make the case a referendum on the growing influence of American Muslims, by presenting evidence at an earlier trial contending that Islam is a not a religion and that Muslims are a threat to their neighbors.

However, presiding Judge Robert Corlew has steadily narrowed the focus of the lawsuit to a single question: Did the Planning Commission give sufficient public notice for the meeting during which the mosque was granted permission to build?

The Islamic Center of Murfreesboro broke ground on the new facility last fall and hope to celebrate Ramadan in the new mosque in late July.

Judge Corlew is scheduled to hear arguments in the case Wednesday and Thursday.