Federal judge allows mosque opponents to intervene

photo Worshipers leave the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro after midday prayers in Murfreesboro, Tenn.

NASHVILLE - A federal judge in Nashville ruled Wednesday to allow opponents of a Murfreesboro mosque to have a say in the religious freedom case involving the building.

Judge Kevin Sharp decided the group of neighbors has a legitimate interest in the case. An emergency ruling by a different federal judge last month overruled the neighbors' victory in Chancery Court that would have halted construction of the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro.

Sharp put strict limits on the issues the mosque opponents will be allowed to address in court.

They can address whether the Chancery Court's order violated the federal Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act.