State: No Evidence That Father Threatened Convert From Islam

(CNN) — A Florida law enforcement report has found no credible evidence that a teenager’s father threatened to kill her for converting from Islam to Christianity.

The 17-year-old girl, Rifqa Bary, ran away from her family in Columbus, Ohio, in July and took refuge in the home of the Rev. Blake Lorenz with the Global Revolution Church in Orlando, Florida. The girl was moved into foster care under the supervision of Florida’s Department of Children and Family after she claimed in a sworn affidavit that her Muslim father threatened her.

An investigative report by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement was released Monday after a juvenile court seal order expired. “Our investigation has provided no clear evidence of criminal activity,” said the state report.

Investigators stated they could not find any evidence to support a history of abuse.

The teenager, in a sworn affidavit, had claimed her father, 47, was pressured by the mosque the family attends in Ohio to “deal with the situation.” In the court filing, Rifqa Bary stated her father said, “If you have this Jesus in your heart, you are dead to me!” The teenager claimed her father added, “I will kill you!”

The parents, Mohamed and Aysha Bary, denied anyone had threatened their daughter including themselves. “We wouldn’t do her harm,” the father said during a court hearing earlier this month, adding that he knew his daughter was involved with Christian organizations.

“I have no problem with her practicing any faith,” he said. But Bary conceded he would have preferred that his daughter practice the Muslim faith first.

The judge in the case has ordered the family into mediation. A court hear is scheduled next week to hear arguments including one filed from the parents attorney asking the court to dismiss the case.


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