A Utah man was arrested on suspicion of two counts of aggravated assault after he allegedly beat a father and son at their tire shop, shouting about how he hated Mexicans and was there to "kill a Mexican."

Salt Lake City police said it is unclear if Alan Dale Covington, 50, will be charged with a hate crime following the reported attack at a mechanic shop this week, The Salt Lake Tribune reported Friday.

Jose Lopez was warming up chicken soup in the office on Tuesday when he heard his son screaming from the garage, the paper reported.


He said he saw a man threatening his 18-year-old son, Luis Gustavo Lopez, with a 5-foot pole.

“I hate Mexicans,” the man allegedly yelled. “I f---ing hate Mexicans … I’m here to kill a Mexican.”

The man allegedly began swinging a pole when Jose Lopez jumped in front of his son. Luis Gustavo Lopez tried to defend his dad with a tool bar but was hit in the face and knocked unconscious by the attacker, the paper reported.

His father was hit in the arm and back trying to protect his son.

The attacker was allegedly scared off when another family member came to check on the commotion.

Luis Gustavo Lopez has been in the intensive care unit since the incident, suffering from a shattered cheekbone and eye socket, as well as a collapsed sinus, the newspaper noted.

Doctors implanted a titanium plate on the right side of his face.

Jose Lopez needed eight stitches in his arm and has a bruised back from the attack, the paper notes.

Veronica Lopez, his daughter, told the newspaper that her father and brother are “very shaken up.”

“My family feels targeted,” she added.

The Lopez family said they have faced an uptick in racial slurs since President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden leads Trump by 36 points nationally among Latinos: poll Trump dismisses climate change role in fires, says Newsom needs to manage forest better Jimmy Kimmel hits Trump for rallies while hosting Emmy Awards MORE came to office, Veronica Lopez said.

“You just hear more of it now,” she said, adding that they were not surprised the attack happened.

Salt Lake City police detective Greg Wilking told the newspaper Friday that it appears Covington was under the influence of drugs during the attack.

He may also have "some mental health issues" that "clouded his judgement,” Wilking said.

Covington, who has previously spent time behind bars, was concerned in lock-up about being attacked by a member of the Mexican mafia — a prison gang mostly based in California.

“He wasn’t really based in reality," Wilking said. “We don’t want to ignore a hate crime if it’s a hate crime, but we don’t want to make it a hate crime if there’s not that aspect of it.”