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'Whoever is doing these things please take heart' | Vandalism attacks at south Charlotte place of worship

Temple leaders say windows were smashed and outdoor cameras and lights were damaged in various incidents over the last two months.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Gurdwara Sahib Khalsa Darbar is meant to be a welcoming place of worship, but over the past few months, Sikh leaders say the temple has been the target of vandalism in south Charlotte.

Multiple windows were found shattered and cameras and lights were targeted too. Thankfully, at the time of the attacks no one was there. Still, the violence has Sikh leaders on edge and questioning safety.

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“Our house of worship traditionally is meant to be open and welcoming to all, but then you start to have to put barriers and security measures up and you worry about safety issues, " Jaspal Singh, member of Gurdwara Sahib Khalsa Darbar, said.

The space is typically used for Sunday worship, Sunday school to teach the youth, formal gatherings, and to provide weekly meals for any and everyone.

Despite the continuing acts of vandalism, temple leaders say they will continue to spread love.

“We’re very sensitive to this issue and it really goes against what we want to build here which is an open community," Singh said. “Whoever is doing these things please take heart. It doesn’t seem like a very kind way of acting.”

A GoFundMe page has been organized to help cover the cost of the repairs and install a safety fence. The goal is to raise at least $60,000.

So far no arrests have been made and police have not said if these cases may be investigated as potential hate crimes.

Contact Briana Harper at bharper@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.  

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