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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Idaho

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Two Boise Men Indicted For Hate Crime

BOISE B Jonathan Lynn Henery, 28, and Beau Edward Hansen, 30, both of Boise, Idaho, were indicted May 13, 2014, on federal hate crime charges for their racially motivated assault of an African-American man, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. An initial appearance date has not been set.

The indictment alleges that on or about October 20, 2013, both men willfully caused bodily injury to a victim, who is African American, because of the victim’s actual and perceived race and color.

The charge of hate crime based on race is a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 249(a)(1), the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crime Prevention Act signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2009. A violation of that statute is punishable by up to 10 years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000.00, and up to 3 years of supervised release.

“Hate crimes target entire communities and are designed to send messages of intolerance that are not welcome here,” said Olson. “This office, along with the Civil Rights Division and our federal and local law enforcement partners, will vigorously investigate and prosecute these crimes.” Olson noted that this is the first case charged under the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crime Prevention Act in the District of Idaho.

“From the first responding patrol officers, to the detectives, officers realized quickly this case was a major crime, a civil rights violation, not just a battery, that demanded the attention of our federal partners,” said Chief Michael Masterson of the Boise Police Department. “Beliefs that fuel crimes based on hate are toxic to our entire community. Boise Police detectives and agents from the FBI put substantial hours into investigating this case. Their work goes to the heart of law enforcement, which is to reduce fear and allow all residents to feel secure as they go about their daily lives. Hate crimes will not be tolerated. Thankfully they are rare in our city, but when they occur, be assured they will be aggressively investigated with all available resources, which are considerable.”

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Boise City Police Department. The case is being jointly prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Idaho and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.

An indictment is a means of charging a person with criminal activity. It is not evidence. The person is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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Updated December 15, 2014