Ilyas Choudry says worshippers at the Islamic Outreach Center in Cypress says found mutilated dead pig Tuesday night near the doorstep of their 5-month-old mosque.
"They were totally surprised to see this," he said.
Leaders at the mosque say the dead pig was placed there sometime after worshipers left following afternoon prayer and arrived back for evening prayer. Muslims don't eat pork and regard the pigs as an unclean animal. Some in the Muslim community are questioning if this was a gesture of hate.
"I think it borders being a hate crime at least from our prospective, because we've seen these before and generally when people put pigs or have dead animals, it's really something hateful," said Mustafaa Carroll with the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
The Islamic Outreach Center says it has not had any problems with neighbors before. One neighbor who asked to remain anonymous says she feels the mosque is too noisy and brings too much traffic, and she says she isn't surprised by what happened.
"This area out here is a big residential area, and there are people out here who don't want them out here because they are Muslim, but the fact is that they really have come into what is basically a residential area," she said.
The Harris County Sheriff's Office issued the following statement: "The HCSO is investigating a report of a dead pig found Tuesday at an Islamic Center located at 19025 Wilks Road. Deputies will gather the facts surrounding the case before making any determination about the nature of the case. Anyone with information as to how the pig ended up at the location is encouraged to call the Harris County Sheriff's Office."