On Monday afternoon, the Ohio State Department of Public Safety released the name of the suspect involved in the violent incident near Watts Hall — Abdul Razak Ali Artan, a third-year in logistics management. The Lantern had interviewed Artan as part of Humans of Ohio State, a print-only feature in The Lantern’s Arts&Life section. Below, The Lantern has reproduced the same interview that appeared in the Aug. 25 issue of the paper. The text below is a direct quote from Artan.
“I just transferred from Columbus State. We had prayer rooms, like actual rooms where we could go pray because we Muslims have to pray five times a day.
“There’s Fajr, which is early in the morning, at dawn. Then Zuhr during the daytime, then Asr in the evening, like right about now. And then Maghrib, which is like right at sunset and then Isha at night. I wanted to pray Asr. I mean, I’m new here. This is my first day. This place is huge, and I don’t even know where to pray.
“I wanted to pray in the open, but I was scared with everything going on in the media. I’m a Muslim, it’s not what the media portrays me to be. If people look at me, a Muslim praying, I don’t know what they’re going to think, what’s going to happen. But, I don’t blame them. It’s the media that put that picture in their heads so they’re just going to have it and it, it’s going to make them feel uncomfortable. I was kind of scared right now. But I just did it. I relied on God. I went over to the corner and just prayed.”
For a PDF version of this story from the original publication date, Aug. 25, click here.