April 17, 2014

Oak Creek temple shooting focus of hearing (AUDIO)

Washington is scrutinizing hate crime statistics in the wake of a Wisconsin mass shooting. Michael Clancy with the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division, told members of the Senate Judiciary Committee that Sikh Temple shooter Wade Michael Page, was known to the FBI, but was not on any agency watch lists. “We never had any information on him pertaining to violent acts against anybody,” said Clancy. “While we were aware of him, we did not have an open investigation on him, not did we have any information that he posed a threat to any group, particularly Sikhs.”

AUDIO: Harpreet Singh Saini (7:45)

On August 5, Page attacked the Sikh temple in suburban Oak Creek, killing six people. Among the dead was the mother of Harpreet Singh Saini. “I came here today to ask the government to give my mother the dignity of being a statistic,” said Saini. “The FBI does not track hate crimes against Sikhs. My mother and those shot that day will not even count on a federal form.” Saini also asked that perpetrators of domestic terrorism be pursued just as aggressively as overseas terrorists.

Saini said he wants to be part of the solution. “That’s why I want to be a law enforcement officer like Lieutenant Brian Murphy, who saved so many lives that day,” he said. “I want to protect other people from what happened to my mother. I want to combat hate. Not just against Sikhs, but against all people.” With that goal in mind, Saini is now a law enforcement student at Milwaukee Area Technical College.