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Published August 21 2012

Fargo man accused of throwing Quran through window into crib

FARGO – A 40-year-old Fargo man faces a felony reckless endangerment charge after he allegedly threw a Quran through an apartment window and the book and glass shards landed in the crib of a sleeping 6-month-old baby.

Dominique Jason Flanigan also is charged in Cass County District Court with misdemeanor criminal mischief for the broken window and misdemeanor simple assault for allegedly punching the baby’s father.

Fargo police Lt. Joel Vettel said the baby escaped the incident un-harmed.

It was reported at 2:25 a.m. Friday as a fight in the street in the 500 block of 11th Street South.

After hearing the Muslim holy book crash through the window and the baby crying, the father went outside to see what was going on and was allegedly punched in the face and knocked to the ground by Flanigan, the police report stated.

The two men continued to fight, and it ended when Flanigan took a for-sale sign out of the front yard and allegedly struck the father with it.

Flanigan, who has no permanent address, fled the scene and was arrested several hours later while walking down University Drive, Vettel said.

Police believe Flanigan was angry with the father because they had been involved in an altercation at a bar earlier that night and Flanigan got kicked out, Vettel said. Police have no reason to believe the alleged crime was racially, ethnically or religiously motivated, he said.

The baby’s parents told police that Flanigan was friends with the family up until a couple of months ago. They said he would visit the house and kept property there, and he was aware that the baby slept in the front bedroom where the window was broken, the report stated.

Flanigan’s apparent knowledge of where the baby slept led police to recommend the reckless endangerment charge, as opposed to a lesser vandalism charge, Vettel said.

“Certainly, that is concerning,” he said.

The Quran measured roughly 12 inches long, 10 inches wide and 3 inches thick, or “just about equal to the size of” the baby, the police report noted.

In addition to the book, large shards of glass from the broken window landed in the baby’s crib and throughout the room, the report stated.

Damage to the window was estimated at $600 to $800.

Flanigan remained in the Cass County Jail on Tuesday on $500 bail. His public defender said he hadn’t been notified that he was appointed to the case and hadn’t reviewed it.

Reckless endangerment is a Class C felony charge punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine upon conviction.

Flanigan pleaded guilty in March to a misdemeanor disorderly conduct charge related to a Dec. 2 incident. He received credit for three days in jail and was ordered to pay $250 in fines and fees, court records show.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Mike Nowatzki at (701) 241-5528