A protester, who allegedly made a “threatening” joke about the Congressional baseball shooting of an Arizona Republican, has been arrested.
Mark Prichard, 59, reportedly made the intimidating comments toward Sen. Jeff Flake and allegedly told one of the senator's staff members “liberals are going to solve the Republican problem” by getting “better aim.” He issued a threat at a health care-related protest held in Tucson, Arizona.
Prichard was immediately taken into custody by the police.
According to a staff member, Prichard said, “You know how liberals are going to solve the Republican problem? They are going to get better aim. That last guy tried, but he needed better aim. We will get better aim.”
As soon as Prichard made the comments, the staff members became worried for Flake and as a result locked the office doors and alerted local authorities. Police reached the scene immediately and told Prichard that he was not allowed on the property.
However, Prichard didn’t comply with their demand and was arrested as a result. He was charged with third-degree criminal trespass and is facing a misdemeanor charge of threats and intimidation.
Protester arrested at Republican Senator Jeff Flake’s office in Tucson.for alleged threat alluding to the Congressional baseball shooting,— Steve Brusk (@stevebruskCNN) July 6, 2017
Prichard reportedly made the comments in reference to the Congressional baseball shooting in Virginia where James Hodgkinson, 66, opened fire on several lawmakers on June 14,which left U.S. Representative Steve Scalise severely injured.
The Republican was shot in the left hip, suffering broken bones, injuries to internal organs and severe bleeding. He is still undergoing recovery. He developed an infection and was readmitted to an intensive care unit. The Republican still remains in critical condition.
Also wounded were a congressional aide and one former aide who now works as a lobbyist, officials said. One Capitol Hill police officer suffered a gunshot wound and another officer twisted an ankle and was released soon from a hospital, police said.