News

Actions

Suspect Pleads No Contest to Florida Mosque Fire

Suspect in Florida Mosque Fire May Plead No Contest
Posted at 6:20 AM, Feb 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-06 10:12:47-05

FORT PIERCE, Fla. (AP) - An ex-convict who investigators say confessed to setting fire to a Florida mosque tied to the Orlando nightclub shooter pleaded no contest to those charges.

Joseph Schneider pleaded no contest to second-degree arson during Monday's hearing in Fort Pierce. A no contest plea is treated the same as a guilty plea and he could get up to 30 years in prison when sentenced.

The 32-year-old Schreiber set the fire at the Islamic Center of Fort Pierce last Sept. 11, the 15th anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks. No one was injured in the fire. Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen sometimes attended the mosque.

Last July, Schreiber, who is Jewish, posted on Facebook that "All Islam is radical" and that all Muslims should be treated as terrorists and criminals.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)