Man accused of hate crime at homeless shelter

A 36-year-old man was arrested Saturday after he allegedly beat and yelled racial slurs at a worker from the temporary winter homeless shelter in Glendale, police said.

Even as officers hauled the man, Jorge Tanchez, into their patrol car, he allegedly continued to yell racial slurs and threatened to kill the 56-year-old worker, whom police identified as a male Glendale resident.

Saturday's incident marks the first hate crime of the year, Glendale Police Sgt. Tom Lorenz said.

The city averages between three and five hate-related incidents per year, he added.

Witnesses told police that Tanchez was with a group of friends about 2:34 p.m. in a park at the Adult Recreation Center in the 200 block of East Harvard Street when he suddenly became agitated by seeing the worker, according to Glendale police.

Tanchez and his friends were staying at the winter shelter at the National Guard Armory in the 200 block of East Colorado Street across from the recreation center.

Tanchez told police that when the worker approached his group, he became angry because he claimed the worker thinks “he is better than everybody else” since he serves food to them.

He yelled racial slurs and told him that nobody wanted him there, according to police.

After hearing the slurs, the worker began to walk away. But the worker told police Tanchez reportedly followed and continued to taunt him, eventually tackling him into some bushes.

Tanchez repeatedly struck the back of the worker's head and hit him on the chin, police said.

Tanchez smelled of alcohol at the time of his arrest, according to police.

Tanchez was arrested on suspicion of battery and committing a hate crime.

He was also arrested last month for allegedly punching a man who asked him to stop trying to pick a fight with others standing in line at the shelter.


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