Utah police investigating attack against a gay couple as possible hate crime


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Police said on Wednesday that an attack against a gay couple in suburban Salt Lake City is being investigated as a hate crime.

Jacob Metcalf and Christian Peacock told local media that they were attacked just after midnight early Saturday morning they were standing outside of the home where Peacock lives with his family in Sandy, a 97,000-person suburb southeast of Salt Lake City. A video published by Peacock’s mother on social media shows a car full of young men outside of a vehicle using homophobic slurs with Peacock demanding they leave.

An altercation ensued and a strike can be heard on the video. Peacock can later be heard saying, “You think you can just hit people?” after which he is again referred to using a derogatory slur. Peacock later went to the hospital to be examined for injuries and told KSL-TV that he had suffered memory loss.

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Utah police are investigating an attack on a gay couple which is being labeled a hate crime.

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A 17-year-old was arrested after the incident on suspicion of assault, Sandy Police Sgt. Greg Moffitt told The Associated Press on Tuesday. No charges have been filed and the suspect was not named because he is a minor.

When charges are filed, Moffitt said police planned to supplement a misdemeanor assault charge with a hate crime enhancement because “it was very obvious that the suspect knew (Peacock) was a gay man and he was targeted for that.”

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“We want our residents to know and we want the public to know that if this happens in our city we’re not going to tolerate it. If it’s a hate crime we’re going to pursue it as a hate crime,” Moffitt said.



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