Reported By Nancy Amons
In Washington on Thursday, a father revealed some painful details he's never shared before.
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He testified about his son how he was recruited by radical Muslims as a college student in Nashville. That student would later go on a shooting spree in Arkansas, killing a soldier and wounding two others.
Carlos Bledsoe grew up in Memphis loving swimming and dancing.
"Carlos grew up a happy-go-lucky kid," said his father, Melvin Bledsoe. "He always had a big smile on his face."
Melvin Bledsoe testified on Capitol Hill about an explosive issue in this country: Are American Muslims looking the other way as al-Qaeda recruits in the United States?
"He was manipulated and lied to," said Melvin Bledsoe.
Carlos Bledsoe attended Tennessee State University in 2003. When he'd come home, his family noticed odd behavior, they said. Carlos Bledsoe took a picture of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. off the wall, saying that from now on, he honors only Allah. He also freed his pet dog.
"We found out he turned the dog loose in the woods because he was told that Muslims considered dogs a dirty creature," Melvin Bledsoe said.
He said the Nashville mosque his son attended paved the way for him to go to a terrorist training camp in Yemen.
"We also learned that that school served as the intake front for radicalization training for Westerners for Jihad," said Melvin Bledsoe.
Carlos Bledsoe became Abdulhakim Muhammad. His jihad was a shooting rampage in Little Rock, Ark. He killed one soldier and wounded two others.
His father blames Muslim leaders in Nashville for planting the seeds of terrorism.
"If we knew how serious his extremism had become, we could have put in every effort to prevent the tragedy in Arkansas from even happening," said Melvin Bledsoe. "God help us. God help us."
But others who testified in Washington on Thursday said it's wrong to hold the U.S. Muslim community accountable for the crimes of a few.
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