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Woman Captured Setting Fire to Flag Outside Shri Tulsi Mandir, NY

The temple is one of the largest Hindu sites in Queens, Worshipers at Shri Tulsi Mandir, which holds weddings, ceremonies and other events celebrating Hindu culture, told police the flag honors the Hindu goddess Durga and the Durga Puja festival, which celebrates the victory of good over evil.

Suspect captured on surveillance video (Photo by NYPD)

QUEENS, NY- A woman was captured on surveillance video setting fire to a flag outside of a Hindu temple in Queens in an incident being investigated as a possible hate crime, police sources said Wednesday.

The unhinged suspect was outside of Shri Tulsi Mandir on 111th Street between 103rd and Liberty Avenues in Richmond Hill just before 8 p.m. March 5 when she casually set the flag ablaze and then walked away, according to video and law enforcement sources.

After a few seconds, the woman takes out a lighter and sets the bottom of a flag on fire, the video shows.The fire was quickly extinguished and didn’t spread to the building, officials said.

Surveillance video released by cops shows a woman wearing black Nike pants, white sneakers and a baseball cap with the Matco Tools company logo on it munching on a sandwich outside outside Shri Tulsi Mandir on 111th St. near 103rd Ave. in Richmond Hill about 7:40 p.m. last Thursday.

The temple is one of the largest Hindu sites in Queens, Worshipers at Shri Tulsi Mandir, which holds weddings, ceremonies and other events celebrating Hindu culture, told police the flag honors the Hindu goddess Durga and the Durga Puja festival, which celebrates the victory of good over evil.

The woman was last wearing black Nike pants, white sneakers and a baseball cap with the Matco Tools company logo on it, sources added.

The NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating.

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