Six African-American men in Salt Lake City could be charged with a hate crime–after beating a white man unconscious, over an argument about a Confederate flag sticker.
Kelly Leeper, the white man who was knocked out in the fight, was in town for a Garth Brooks concert. The Confederate flag sticker was on the back of the truck that belonged to his friend.
On Sunday, Leeper looked out the window of his hotel room to notice a group of black men standing around his friend’s truck.
Since there was expensive work equipment in the back of the truck, Leeper and his friend went down to check on their property.
Turns out, the group of black men weren’t interested in the equipment–they instead demanded to know why a “racist” Confederate flag sticker was on the back of the truck.
After Leeper defended his friend’s right to put anything he wanted on the back of his truck, a fight quickly broke out–with racial slurs being flung at him, before the knockout blow.
The fight was caught on video, which has been turned over to the police in Salt Lake City. Another witness was also able to supply a partial license plate number and a car description of the attackers.
Police are confident that, between the video and what they know about the car, they’ll have enough information to eventually track down the suspects. But, so far, they have not yet been found or identified.
When they are found, however, Leeper’s attackers might be facing much more severe charges than simply assault and battery.
Salt Lake Police Sergeant Robin Heiden explained that, because of the racist nature of the fight it could “potentially be a hate crime.”
Leeper and his friend both suffered cuts and bruises, but they did not have any serious injuries.