Sacto 9-1-1
February 17, 2012
Man sentenced in hate-crime assault at Elk Grove bowling alley

A man who admitted to an assault at the Strikes Family Entertainment Center in Elk Grove last June was sentenced today.

Joel Baltazar Olivarez pleaded guilty to assaulting Seth Parker and admitted to a hate crime enhancement. Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Steve White sentenced Olivarez to three years in prison, but the sentence was stayed pending successful completion of five years of formal probation, according to Sacramento County District Attorney's Office news release.

Terms and conditions of Olivarez's probation include one year in county jail, drug and/or alcohol treatment, and 240 hours of community service to be served in an organization or program within the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community. If Olivarez violates any term or condition of his probation in the next five years, the stay will be lifted and he will be required to serve the prison term, officials said.

The assault occurred June 5, 2011. As Parker and several female friends were leaving Strikes, they were confronted by an intoxicated Olivarez in the parking lot. Olivarez began harassing Parker's female friends. When Parker attempted to intervene, Olivarez struck him in the face while yelling anti-gay slurs at him.

Parker suffered a complex facial fracture that required multiple surgeries, including one to insert a metal plate to hold his facial bones in proper position, according to the news release.

Parker has since moved to another city as a result of a job transfer. His family represented him in court today, and his mother read his victim impact statement. Parker acknowledged the physical and emotional pain he suffered, and thanked the community, his family and friends for their support.

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