A 22-year-old man was arrested Saturday on suspicion of spray-painting racial slurs and a swastika on a car Friday night.
Alex Timothy Hynes, of Steamboat Springs, is accused of using white spray paint to deface a 1994 Mercury sedan that belongs to a 22-year-old black man, Steamboat police Sgt. Nick Bosick said. Hynes is being charged with harassment, ethnic intimidation and menacing.
This is the second reported hate crime in the past week involving derogatory remarks written on a car. The first incident involved a donated vehicle that was defaced with ketchup and mustard Friday in a Colorado Mountain College parking lot. That vehicle had similar slurs written on it.
Police Capt. Joel Rae said Hynes had been at a party with several friends in the 200 block of Fourth Street on Friday night when he reportedly became involved in a fight with the man whose car was defaced. Rae also said Hynes reportedly yelled racial slurs at the man.
Rae said the other residents of the home told Hynes to leave when he pulled out a pocketknife and "threatened to use it."
Rae said another resident picked up a golf club to get Hynes out of the house. The residents called police after Hynes reportedly returned to the home later Friday night. Officers went to the home and took a report.
Bosick said the residents called police again Saturday morning after finding the defaced car.
Officers arrested Hynes on Saturday after interviewing witnesses and documenting the alleged crime.
Bosick said Hynes admitted to being at the party Friday but denied having a knife or spraypainting the vehicle.
Bosick said that, at this point in the investigation, he does not think the weekend incident is related to the CMC incident, but that the police department is pursuing them as if they were related.
Hynes was released from jail Monday on a $5,000 bond. He will appear in court at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.