Salt Lake City Police: Tips sought after alleged hate crime near Utah Pride Festival

Salt Lake City Police vehicle. File photo: Gephardt Daily/Monico Garza/SLCScanner

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, June 7, 2022 — The Salt Lake City Police Department is investigating an alleged incident that reportedly included multiple assaults and possible hate speech

According to a statement issued by the SLCPD public relations unit, police were alerted at about 2:30 a.m. Sunday to an assault in progress near 154 W. 600 South, a few blocks southwest of the Utah Pride Festival location at Washington Square.

“Based on the preliminary information, a group of three people, in their young 20s, had been at an event celebrating Pride and were walking when they saw a fight between a man and a woman,” the SLCPD statement claims.

“A man from the initial group attempted to intervene when the suspect directed his attention toward the man who tried to help stop the fight. The suspect and the group of three had met earlier at a prior event on Saturday June 4th into Sunday June 5th, according to witness statements.

“The suspect then started yelling hate speech and punched the man who tried to help. The victim’s two friends tried to stop the assault, but they too were punched. The suspect continued to use homophobic hate speech toward all three victims, the police PR statement said. “The suspect’s assault caused minor injuries to two of the victims.”

The third person suffered a head injury but chose not to be transported to the hospital by paramedics or to receive medical treatment at the scene and left with friends, the police statement says.

“Officers attempted to locate the suspect but could not find him. Officers have developed some limited information on the suspect’s identity and will be working to further the investigation.”

The Salt Lake City Police Department is asking that anyone with information about this case, including photos or videos, to call 801-799-3000 and reference case number 22-105521.

“The Salt Lake City Police Department is trained on investigating hate crimes and responding in a victim-centered, trauma-informed way,” the statement says.

Anyone who is a victim of hate crime who would like to speak with a victim advocate is asked to call the 24/7 hotline at 801-580-7969, the statement says. To report a hate crime or any crime, call 9-1-1.

“This investigation is in the early stages, but the Salt Lake City Police Department wants to alert our community about the incident and to reassure our community that we are aware of the incident and that the case is being investigated,” the statement says.

It adds that “the assault does not appear to be targeted, nor does it appear to be a stranger-on-stranger attack. The specific motive to the assault remains unknown. However, because hate speech was used during the assault, this case is being investigated as a potential hate crime.”


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