Salt Lake City police are asking the public for help identifying a man who hit another after asking if he was gay. The assault is captured in an eight-second video posted to Twitter on Sunday by Sal Trejo and quickly spread through social media.
The assault took place downtown and the video starts with the suspect asking “Are you gay though?”
Trejo responds, “Oh, I am.”
“Oh, then you are gay.”
That’s when the man smacks him with his right hand.
Here is the video. Warning, it includes violence and explicit language:
Trejo also posted a statement that said after the assault, the man pulled a knife, yelled derogatory things and eventually ran to a car.
“This man is dangerous and needs to be held accountable for his actions,” Trejo wrote.
Salt Lake City police are investigating and asking for information.
State Sen. Derek Kitchen, the only openly gay member of Utah’s Legislature, also took to social media, posting the video with this message: “It’s time for the UT Legislature to act on hate crimes legislation.”
This comes a week after a pride flag was torn in front of Laziz Kitchen, the restaurant owned by Kitchen and his husband, Moudi Sbeity.
State lawmakers have rebuffed repeated efforts to toughen Utah’s toothless hate crimes law. The most recent version has yet to get a hearing in a committee.
The Salt Lake Tribune is partnering with ProPublica and newsrooms across the country to better understand the prevalence and nature of hate crimes, bias and prejudice. You can share your insights with us at sltrib.com/documentinghateand we may contact you for future stories.