This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
A November preliminary hearing has been set for well-known Utah Latino activist Tony Yapias, who is charged with sexually assaulting a woman in March, the same month in which she had broken off their long-term relationship.
Yapias, 50, is charged in 3rd District Court with first-degree felony rape, as well as a charge of class A misdemeanor evidence tampering.
During a Monday court hearing, a preliminary hearing was set for Nov. 22, at which prosecutors will present evidence and a judge will decide if there is probable cause to move the case forward to trial.
Also Monday, a judge reduced Yapias' bond from $250,000 to $100,000. Yapias had posted $250,000 and was freed on Sept. 13, a day after he was arrested on the charges.
Yapias, whose full name is Adolpho Tony Yapias-Delgado, is the director of Proyecto Latino de Utah, which works on immigration and Hispanic issues. The Peruvian native was director of Utah's Hispanic Affairs Office and has had several Hispanic-affairs radio shows.
Yapias has told news reporters that was "stunned" by the rape allegation, but confident in the judicial system.
Charging documents say that on March 21, Yapias went to the woman's South Salt Lake home despite her admonition in multiple text messages that he stay away to try to talk about her decision to break off their relationship, which had lasted about four years.
The woman initially refused to let Yapias into the home, court documents state, but he pushed his way through the door when she opened it to go outside.
The woman again told Yapias she had no interest in continuing their relationship and did not want to have sex.
"The defendant forced the issue and had sexual intercourse with the victim without her consent," investigators say.
Yapias told investigators that he had sex with her, according to the documents, but he said the woman consented because she removed her clothes.
Yapias later grabbed the woman's cellphone and deleted their text-message exchange as the two discussed her reasons for being angry with him and ending their relationship. The conversation took place in Yapias' car just after the alleged rape, court papers say.
Yapias told investigators he had deleted the messages, police said.
Yapias was a one-time freelance correspondent for The Salt Lake Tribune.