Feds investigate second fire at Florida mosque in 10 days

Posted at 7:13 AM, Jul 28, 2016

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Investigators are looking for answers after fire broke out at a Florida mosque for the second time in 10 days.

Federal and local officials are investigating the blaze Wednesday at the Islamic Education Center in Tampa.

Sallah Harake, a mosque board member, said electricity was blamed for the July 17 fire. But he said the power has been cut off then.

The Islamic center's caretaker told investigators he heard popping sounds and saw smoke. He doused flames with a hose while a neighbor called 911.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms is investigating because it is a house of worship.

In a separate case, The Tampa Bay Times reported a fire last week at Madinatul Ilm — the other mosque in Hillsborough County — was determined to be accidental.