This story has been corrected to show that the Federal Bureau of Investigation says Adan encouraged female relatives to become more religious, not his sisters.
St. Cloud Police say Adan made at least one reference to Allah during the stabbings and asked a victim if they were Muslim before attacking.
Stearns County Attorney Janelle Kendall, who revealed video showing suspect Dahir Adan running about inside the mall and being shot while holding knives, announced her decision during a news conference at police headquarters that cleared Avon police officer Jason Falconer of any wrongdoing. Falconer shot Adan six times as he repeatedly tried to attack the officer, the authorities said.
The Somali community in Minnesota, the country's largest, has warned against anti-immigrant sentiment or Islamophobia after the incident. Young Somalis have been a target for terror recruiters. The FBI says that more than two-dozen young people from the Twin Cities have left the country to join extremist groups overseas over the past 15 years. In addition, roughly a dozen people have left to join militants in Syria, and nine Minnesota men face sentencing on terror charges for plotting to join the Islamic State group.
FBI Director James Comey said last week it appeared Adan, who was Somali-American, was at least partly inspired by extremist ideology. According to the authorities, over a span of several months 20-year-old Dahir Ahmed Adan went from a good student with mostly secular interests to almost failing out of college and developing a curiosity about radical Islam.
Adan, who had moved to the United States from Kenya with his family as a child and had grown up in St. Cloud, had withdrawn and shown an increased interest in religion in the months leading up to the attack, Thornton said.
Dahir Adan, the man accused of stabbing 10 people at a Minnesota mall last month, slashed an electronics store employee and later advanced toward an off-duty police officer even after sustaining gunshot wounds, security footage released on Thursday showed. None of his victims' injuries were life-threatening.
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Thornton didn't elaborate on the FBI's efforts to get into Adan's iPhone, and agency spokesman Kyle Loven said he couldn't comment further because of the ongoing investigation.
"He went from being an excellent student with a high GPA to flunking out of college nearly overnight", FBI Special Agent Rick Thornton told a news conference.
Special Thornton says investigators have talked to 180 witnesses and viewed hundreds of hours of videotape from more than 100 security cameras installed at 23 different locations in the mall. The FBI is tracing Adan's social media and other digital activity.
"Authorities on Thursday didn't detail the nature of Adan's likely radicalization". He was involved in a hit and run with a bicyclist on his way to the mall.
Police were initially dispatched to a report of a stabbing inside the Crossroads Center mall just after 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17. Adan was armed with two steak knives.
Adan's family rejected the FBI's conclusions, according to the Associated Press. They believe Adan may have self-radicalized, or been radicalized through the encouragement of others.
"This is not the son that they knew", he added.