A Utah lady faces hate crime-related costs that would ship her to jail for a yr after she allegedly stomped on a pro-police signal and smirked in an “intimidating method” at a deputy who gave her good friend a dashing ticket.
The costs stem from an incident that occurred at a fuel station in Panguitch, Utah, on July 7, when a Garfield County sheriff’s deputy pulled the suspect’s good friend over for dashing.
The suspect, 19, was consoling her good friend in regards to the ticket when she allegedly tried to “intimidate” the sheriff’s deputy by destroying an indication that learn “Again the Blue,” in keeping with charging paperwork obtained by the Salt Lake Tribune.
“I noticed one of many buddies … stomping on a ‘Again the Blue’ signal subsequent to the place the site visitors cease was performed, crumple it up in a harmful method and throw it right into a trash can,” the deputy wrote within the charging doc obtained by the Each day Beast.
He added that she did all this “whereas smirking in an intimidating method towards me.”
The officer didn’t again down from the “intimidating” smirk, in keeping with the doc. As a substitute, he learn the girl her Miranda rights and requested the place she acquired the signal. She initially claimed that she acquired it from her mother earlier than acknowledging that she discovered it on the bottom, in keeping with the deputy.
The deputy mentioned it appeared like an indication issued by his sheriff’s workplace, so he arrested her for “destroying property that didn’t belong to her in a way to aim to intimidate regulation enforcement.”
The girl has been charged with disorderly conduct and legal mischief with a hate crime enhancement, which features a most sentence of a yr in jail.
The hate crime enhancement was added as a result of the girl was allegedly making an attempt to “intimidate or terrorize” the officer, the charging doc mentioned. “Intimidate or terrorize” means inflicting an individual to concern for his or her security or inflicting injury to the property of that individual or one other, in keeping with Utah’s hate crime statute for civil rights violations.
The Garfield County Sheriff’s Workplace and the county legal professional’s workplace haven’t commented on the signal case.
The suspect has not been recognized.
It’s not the primary time that somebody has confronted a hate crime enhancement for vandalizing pro-police indicators within the county. Final yr, a 32-year-old was charged with a hate crime after he used pink spray-paint to edit a “Again the Blue” sign up Garfield County, in order that it learn “Again the Bisexual.”
The person in the end pleaded responsible to a graffiti cost within the case. He spent two days in jail, paid a $500 high-quality, wrote an apology letter and agreed to 12 months of probation.
“You come into my county and destroy our treasures — whether or not it’s a bridge, a monument or anything — you’ll be arrested and charged,” Garfield County Sheriff Danny Perkins informed the St. George Information on the time.
Police have confronted widespread backlash in america and Canada during the last yr, courting again to the homicide of George Floyd by police officer Derek Chauvin final Might. Some conservatives have responded to the Black Lives Matter backlash by rallying round police with slogans reminiscent of “Again the Blue” and “Blue Lives Matter.”
The strain between police and activists has boiled over in lots of locations, together with Utah, the place authorities have used statutes to boost the potential jail time for anti-police protesters.
Final yr, for instance, a lady confronted life in jail for purchasing purple paint that was later splashed on the Salt Lake County district legal professional’s workplace throughout a BLM demonstration. Authorities used a gang-related enhancement to extend the potential penalty.
She in the end agreed to pay $100,000 in damages as a part of a plea deal within the case.
— With recordsdata from The Related Press
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