Meriden man may plead guilty to hate crime charges in mosque shooting

Ted Hakey Jr. (Photo: U.S. Attorney Deirdre Daly's Office)

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)– The man charged with shooting at a Meriden mosque will be back in court. News 8 has learned he may plead guilty to federal hate crime charges.

Ted Hakey claimed he was innocent all along, but it looks like Thursday that will change to a formal guilty plea in Hartford Federal Court.

Hakey told the FBI that he had been out drinking on that day last November, came home, had another round and then reached for different kind of rounds – rounds of ammunition. He went in the back yard and fired several shots from a handgun, then a rifle. Four bullets from the rifle went into the mosque next door and up a steep hill from his Meriden house.

He told the FBI he was aiming at a woodpile and never meant to hit the mosque. The problem with that is Hakey is a competitive sharpshooter. He also claimed he had no problem with Muslims.

The problem with that is that his Facebook page was full of hate messages about Muslims, including one that said the next time there’s a terror attack, we should pick five mosques and shoot everybody.

He fired his shots just hours after Isis attacked Paris. All that evidence was enough to get Hakey arrested and charged with a hate crime. He was also growing marijuana, which the FBI didn’t like either.

The leaders of that Meriden mosque have invited Hakey to come attend a service and learn what the true meaning of Islam is, but the courts have ordered Hakey to have no contact with anyone from the mosque.

The maximum sentence he could get is 20 years in prison. Later Thursday we’ll see what kind of a deal his lawyer made in exchange for his guilty plea.

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