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Utah man sentenced for hate crime after attacking three men, shouting ‘Kill Mexicans’

Aug 8, 2023, 4:46 PM | Updated: 4:46 pm

This 2018 booking photo provided by The Salt Lake County Sheriff's office shows Alan Dale Covington...

This 2018 booking photo provided by The Salt Lake County Sheriff's office shows Alan Dale Covington. Covington was charged with a hate crime last week by the U.S. Department of Justice for allegedly attacking three Latino men last year at a Salt Lake City tire shop and shouting that he wanted to "kill Mexicans." (The Salt Lake County Sheriff's office via AP)

(The Salt Lake County Sheriff's office via AP)

SALT LAKE CITY — A man accused of attacking three men with a metal pole because he thought they were Mexican was sentenced.

According to a Department of Justice press release, Alan Covington was convicted in February 2020 of three counts of hate crime with an attempt to assault or kill. On Monday, Covington was sentenced to 20 years in prison, followed by five years of supervised release.

On Nov. 27, 2018, Covington, armed with a metal pole and a hatchet, entered the now closed, family-owned tire shop, Lopez Tires, according to the DOJ.

“Upon entering the shop, the defendant demanded to know if the men were Mexican,” the DOJ press release stated. “The defendant shouted that he wanted to “Kill Mexicans” and then began swinging the metal pole at the business owner, his brother, and teenage son.”

The DOJ said Covington hit the teenager with the metal pole and struck the father multiple times in the back. The business owner escaped and called police, where Covington was arrested.

According to the DOJ, the teenager received “serious physical injury to his face.”

During Covington’s trial, he pleaded not guilty to all charges claiming that the “Mexican Mafia” had been after him for years and that he went to Lopez Tires because “they all know each other.”

The attack against the three men was cited as an example when the Utah State Legislature passed a stricter hate crimes law in 2019.

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Utah man sentenced for hate crime after attacking three men, shouting ‘Kill Mexicans’