MUNCIE, Ind. -- A Ball State University student is accused of assaulting multiple people at a Goodwill store in Muncie last week because they would not convert to Islam.
Khalid Sulaiman Bilal, 24, is also accused of breaking a Muncie police officer’s hand and punching another one in the face.
Muncie police say Bilal, a native of Saudia Arabia, was attempting to convert employees at the Goodwill store located on West Hessler Road to Islam when the attacks began around 1:30 p.m. on March 25. One of the employees told police that Bilal was trying to place his hands on them and claimed he was the Prophet Muhammed. He then hit and strangled one of the female employees and threatened to kill her if she didn’t convert to Islam.
A responding officer said Bilal was confronting employees when he arrived at the store. When the officer tried to take Bilal into custody, Bilal began attacking him. The officer’s hand was broken during the struggle.
Bilal then charged at the second officer who arrived on the scene. That officer said he used a Taser on Bilal until he was on the ground and after a struggle was able to handcuff and leg shackle him.
Bilal was taken to the hospital to be treated. While there he was able to free himself from his handcuffs and attacked another officer who tried to re-cuff him, striking the officer in the face. The officer was eventually able to re-cuff him.
Bilal yelled “Allahu akbar” during each of his attacks, a phrase that Homeland Security officers said has often been used by Islamic radicals before violent attacks.
Because of the incident at Goodwill and the mannerisms of the suspect, Homeland Security requested a search warrant, in which the requesting agent noted, “I believe Bilal showed signs of radicalized behavior in the March 25, 2017, incident and is a danger to the community.”
Homeland Security said they seized laptops, a camera and travel documents from Bilal’s home.
Bilal faces multiple charges including battery, strangulation, resisting law enforcement and intimidation.