'I'm here to kill a Mexican'; FBI investigates hate crime

On November 27, a 50-year-old African-American man attacked two men of Mexican origin in Salt Lake City with a stick more than one meter long.

An 18-year-old boy and his 51-year-old father were beaten by an African-American man with a stick while shouting 'I hate Mexicans'
An 18-year-old boy and his 51-year-old father were beaten by an African-American man with a stick while shouting 'I hate Mexicans'

"I hate Mexicans." "I hate Mexicans." "Are you part of the Mexican mafia?" "I'm here to kill a Mexican," the 50-year-old Alan Dale Covington cried during the attack, according to the newspaper, Salt Lake City Tribune.

Luis Gustavo López, 18, suffered a fracture in his cheekbone and eye socket, and his nose was fractured. His father, 51, who tried to protect him, received a blow to the arm and back inside the tire repair shop of the "Lopez Tires" family in Salt Lake City.

Covington was arrested and remains in custody on $ 100,000 bail, charged with two felony state charges of aggravated assault along with weapons and drug charges.

The attack on the teenager and his father caused outrage in Salt Lake City, where such incidents are not frequent.

The Mexican consul in Salt Lake City, José V. Borjón, informed Notimex that officials from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) confirmed the opening of an investigation into the case.

Borjón said that upon hearing the incident, the consulate provided assistance and protection to the López family and demanded a thorough investigation of the facts from the local authorities.

The consul confirmed that José López, the owner of the workshop is a migrant from the state of Hidalgo, and his son Luis Gustavo, is a citizen of the United States.

After several days of hospitalization, the teenager was discharged from a hospital in Salt Lake City and recovered with his father at home, said Borjon.

Even though the attack may have been motivated by hatred, the Salt Lake County prosecutor's office did not accuse Covington of a crime of this nature because Utah law only allows that crime to be added to charges. aggression for minor crimes.

Borjón explained that, under Utah law, hate crime is an aggravating circumstance of a misdemeanor and the county attorney preferred to file felony charges.

The consul said he met with local and federal authorities. In the interview, FBI officials notified him that they had opened an investigation into the case. Covington will have to appear before a state judge on Wednesday to determine his legal status.

Borjón said that in the jurisdiction of the consulate of Mexico in Salt Lake City, which covers the entire state of Utah and western Wyoming, there are about 220,000 Mexican migrants.