(SAN DIEGO, CA, 9/30/21) – The San Diego chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-San Diego) today welcomed the plea agreement reached by the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office and John Earnest, a Ranch Penasquitos resident who in 2019 set fire to the Dar-ul-Arqam Mosque in Escondido and 4 months later killed and injured worshippers in a Synagogue in Poway. CAIR San Diego stands by in solidarity with the families and community who were directly and indirectly affected by these tragedies.

John Earnest is sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for his assault on the Jewish and Muslim communities in Poway and Escondido. He admitted to shooting the Synagogue because he held a strong hatred for Jews and thought they were destroying the white race. He killed one worshipper and injured three others before being chased out of the synagogue by a brave worshipper. He also admitted to burning the Mosque in Escondido to terrorize the worshippers inside, thankfully no worshipper at the Mosque was injured.

SEE: Survivors, Loved Ones Describe ‘Pure Evil’ of Poway Synagogue Shooter at Sentencing


In a statement, CAIR San Diego Associate Executive Director Tazheen Nizam said:

“Domestic terrorists like John Earnest need to see that hateful and bigoted actions to destroy our communities only make us more resilient and increases unity across faiths. The Muslim community stands in solidarity with our Jewish sisters and brothers and is grateful for the justice served in this case. While the painful loss of a family member remains in our hearts, it is important to stand together during these difficult times and lean on each other for support.”

CAIR’s mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.


CONTACT: CAIR-SD Operations & Development Manager Omair Khan, 619-880-4601 or okhan@cair.com