Ky. Man Challenging Hate Crime Law

by Brett Barrouquere

Associated Press

Thursday July 26, 2012

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - An eastern Kentucky man charged with a federal hate crime in an attack on a gay man is challenging the law that protects people against attacks motivated by sexual orientation.

The attorney for 20-year-old Anthony Ray Jenkins of Partridge says the law "arbitrarily" creates a protected class of people and that's not what Congress intended in passing the legislation in 2009.

Anthony Jenkins and his cousin, 37-year-old David Jason Jenkins of Cumberland, have pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping, assault and violating the hate crime law.

Prosecutors say the men assaulted Kevin Pennington at Kingdom Come State Park on April 4, 2011. Prosecutors say the men are the first to be charged under the hate crimes statute. If convicted, they face life in prison.

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