Homeland Security

FBI Releases Video, New Details in Minnesota Mall Terror Attack by Somali Refugee Dahir Adan

The FBI held an unusual press conference today in the case of last month’s terror attack at a shopping mall in St. Cloud, Minnesota. The attacker, 20-year old Somali refugee Dahir Adan, was shot and killed on the scene by an off-duty police officer after stabbing ten mall workers and shoppers.


The press conference was unusual in that the investigation into the matter is still ongoing, but the FBI and local law enforcement felt the need to release graphic video of the attacks in order to shoot down various conspiracy theories circulating in the Minnesota Somali community and perpetuated by Black Lives Matter groups.

One of the early conspiracy theories floated by Adan’s family was the claim that he was an innocent bystander who was in the mall to pick up his new iPhone at the mall:

Those false rumors led some in the Somali community to use the incident to circulate claims that the shooting of Adan was unjustified:


Others claimed that Adan was mentally ill, which the family denied:

Just last week FBI Director James Comey testified that Adan appeared to be inspired by “extremist ideology”:

The FBI released further details on his possible motivation during their press conference today.

CBS News reports:

The stabbings at a central Minnesota mall last month that wounded 10 likely was premeditated by the attacker, who may have become radicalized recently, federal authorities said Thursday.

Dahir Ahmed Adan became interested in Islam in the last several months, withdrew from his friends and encouraged his sisters to be more religious, FBI Special Agent Rick Thornton said at a news conference.

Witnesses told investigators that 20-year-old Adan yelled “Islam, Islam” and “Allahu akbar,” as well as asking several people whether they were Muslim before stabbing them during the Sept. 17 attack, which started outside Crossroads Center mall before moving inside.

“We were told Adan had not previously shown an interest in religion. Adan also encouraged some female relatives to become more religiously observant,” Thornton said, adding that investigators continue to analyze Adan’s digital footprint, including his social media and online activity, and are trying to obtain permission to unlock his smartphone.

FBI Director James Comey said last week it appeared Adan was at least partly inspired by extremist ideology. Thornton also said that Adan went from being a high academic performer to failing out of college “almost overnight” after taking an increased interest in Islam.


During the press conference they showed video of some of the stabbings and the confrontation with the off-duty officer who shot him:

ISIS immediately claimed credit for the attack and has featured Adan in recent pro-ISIS media:


Up until recently, he appeared to be a model citizen and student:

But the FBI emphasized during the press conference today his shift towards stricter Islamic adherence:

As I noted here at PJ Media, some of the Minnesota press, namely the far-Left Minneapolis Star Tribune, had initially characterized the incident as anti-Muslim, even after Adan had been identified as the suspect. A litany of media reports claiming an atmosphere of Islamophobia in St. Cloud ensued.

But now it seems clear that the official narrative is drifting towards one of an isolated individual radicalized online with no connection to the rest of the Somali community in St. Cloud or Minnesota. This despite the state having the highest number of ISIS-related arrests in recent years.


We’ll provide more details in the case of this domestic terror attack as we have them.

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