Utah man charged with federal hate crimes in alleged attack on men after asking if they were Mexican

Alan Dale Covington. Photo: Salt Lake County

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Feb. 20, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — A federal grand jury in Salt Lake City has returned a three-count indictment charging Alan D. Covington for allegedly attacking three men with a metal pole because he believed the men were Mexican.

The indictment alleges that on Nov. 27 of last year, Covington, 50, entered the premises of a tire store, shouted that he wanted to “kill Mexicans,” and then struck a victim identified as  L.G.L in the head with a metal pole, a statement from the Department of Justice says. The indictment alleges that the attack against L.G.L. included an attempt to kill.

According to the indictment, Covington also struck a victim identified as J.L. with a metal pole. Both men suffered bodily injury. The indictment further alleges that Covington swung the metal pole at A.L. in an attempt to injure A.L.

If convicted, Covington faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and a $250,000 fine.

The case is being investigated by the Salt Lake City Field Office of the FBI, with the cooperation of the Salt Lake City Police Department.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney J. Drew Yeates of the United States Attorney’s Office and Trial Attorney Rose E. Gibson of the Civil Rights Division.

Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski and Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown released statements regarding the indictment.

“This attack sowed fear into our community and was met with a swift and thorough investigation by the Salt Lake City Police Department who rightfully reached out to the FBI for assistance,” Biskupski said. “It is time Utah adopt comprehensive hate crime legislation to give law enforcement and investigators the tools they need to prosecute these types of crime.”

Brown shared his pride:

“I’m incredibly proud of our detectives whose work in conjunction with the FBI brought this indictment to fruition,” he said. “The Salt Lake City Police Department will continue to work with any willing partner to ensure justice is available to everyone in the Capital City.”


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