A Muslim man has sued an Ohio gym in federal court, alleging its employees violated his civil rights by telling him to stop praying in the locker room and threatening to kick him out if he did it again.
Mohamed Fall, 28, has attended an LA Fitness in Cincinnati since October 2013, praying quietly after his workouts for about five minutes in a corner of the locker room, he said in the lawsuit filed on Monday.
Fall’s lawsuit said he was accosted by gym employees in January while praying alone in the locker room, who told him he would be banned if he were again seen praying.
“Mr. Fall has observed others at LA Fitness engaged in religious prayer and related activities, such as making the sign of the cross,” the lawsuit stated. “Upon information and belief, none of that behavior has ever been banned by LA Fitness. Mr. Fall believes he was singled out because he is a Muslim.”
Fall is asking the federal court for an injunction allowing him to continue to pray within the locker room.
A manager at the gym declined to comment and referred questions to a corporate email address.