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Man accused of assaulting another homeless man with a ukulele at St. George shelter

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Posted at 8:35 AM, Dec 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-28 10:35:32-05

ST. GEORGE, Utah — A St. George man is in jail on suspicion of beating another homeless man with a ukulele.

According to a probable cause statement, the assault took place Wednesday night at the Switchpoint Community Resource Center located at 948 North 1300 West.

42-year-old Matthew Cowart is accused of beating another resident of the shelter. The victim told police Cowart had dragged him off the top bunk onto the floor and repeatedly punched him in the face and had him in a chokehold and he lost consciousness.

Another resident told police he saw Cowart beat the man with a ukulele that had a screw sticking out near the tuning forks. The victim was covered in his own blood and had multiple lacerations and knots forming on his face and head.

Cowart told police he assaulted the victim because he was “mentally and physically abusing” his roommates and that Cowart “was tired of it.” Cowart denied he had used the ukulele in the assault.

Police said the evidence indicated otherwise and booked Cowart on suspicion of second-degree felony aggravated assault.