No one was injured in the Jan. 14 blaze, but it destroyed about half of the Islamic Center of Eastside. Police say there’s no indication that the fire was a hate crime or related to terrorism.
A homeless man who set fire to a Bellevue mosque in January pleaded guilty Friday to first-degree reckless burning, according to King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
No one was injured in the Jan. 14 blaze, but it destroyed about half of the Islamic Center of Eastside in the Lake Hills neighborhood, according to the Bellevue Fire Department. The two-story building was valued at $1.2 million in 2016, according to county property records.
Isaac Wayne Wilson, 37, who has an extensive history of mental illness and property damage, was found in a parking lot behind the mosque, staring at the fire, according to charging documents. When approached by police, he calmly said, “I did it,” the documents say.
A man with clothing matching Wilson’s was seen on the mosque security cameras approaching building at 2:38 a.m. with a plastic jug. Moments later, smoke and large flames obscure the camera view, according to the charges.
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Police said there’s no indication that the fire was a hate crime or related to terrorism. Wilson has previously been charged in connection with a July 2016 altercation at the mosque.
According to court records, Wilson has been arrested 50 times in Washington and has been convicted of three felonies — malicious mischief and assault — and 21 misdemeanors.
In July 2016, Wilson disrupted prayers at the mosque and was escorted out by worshippers. He pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and disorderly conduct.
His probation officer told the court in December that Wilson suffered from “serious mental-health issues.” The report said he was “currently receiving medications” but that they do not “completely eliminate the audio hallucinations and he still hears voices.”