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Brothers charged with hate crime in attack on black missionary

Feb 19, 2020, 5:45 AM
(Malachi West, left, Sebastian West, right.  Credit: Utah County Jail) The two brothers were offici...
(Malachi West, left, Sebastian West, right. Credit: Utah County Jail) The two brothers were officially charged with hate crimes after being accused of an attack against a black missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
(Malachi West, left, Sebastian West, right. Credit: Utah County Jail)

PAYSON, Utah — Police officially charged two brothers with a hate crime after being accused of an attack on a black missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The charging documents give insight into what may have led up to the attack.

The missionaries were approaching a home in Payson to teach someone when they noticed a group of young men threatening one of the residents. The victim asked the group to leave and got out his cell phone to call police.

However, this was met with one of the brothers throwing the phone across the street and someone in the group showing he had brass knuckles. While they were reportedly beating the missionary, they used racial slurs and insults such as, “Church boy” and “Go back to slavery.”

This is all according to the charging documents.

The two brothers, Malachi, 20, and Sebastian West, 19, are charged with third degree felony assault.

Officers previously arrested Sebastian and Malachi West for investigation of assault and criminal mischief last week. However, it isn’t known if more people were involved in the attack — police believe there may have been up to five or six people involved.

However, descriptions of all the suspects were incredibly vague, with reports they were wearing bandanas around their faces.

One of the suspects, Sebastian West, is a repeat offender, fresh off a separate violent assault charge. On Jan. 9, he was charged in 4th District Court for an assault that happened in December in Payson Canyon.

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Brothers charged with hate crime in attack on black missionary