A Florida man who was arrested for allegedly driving through a Republican voter registration tent told police he dislikes President Trump and felt like “someone had to take a stand,” according to an arrest report filed in court papers.
Gregory Timm, 27, has been charged with driving with a suspended license, two counts of aggravated assault against a person 65 years or older, and criminal mischief. The report said no drugs and alcohol were involved.
The incident happened in the early afternoon of Feb. 8 in a parking lot in Jacksonville, Florida. The victims — Nina Williams, 72, and Liura Collins, 65 — told police that a car accelerated towards them and knocked over several chairs, tables and a tent, according to the report. No one was hurt. Collins and Williams also told police that the suspect got out of the car afterwards, took a photo, “flipped them off,” and left.
Police located Timm after receiving a tip about the location of his vehicle.
According to the report, Timm told police that “someone had to take a stand” when asked about the incident. He said that he had gone to Walmart to get food, noticed the tent and, per the arrest report, then showed police cell phone video of him driving at it. He also told police that he disliked Trump — a statement which a partially redacted version of the arrest report filed with the Duval County Clerk of Courts appears to list as a potential motivation for the incident. (Reached for comment, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office did not offer any further clarification.)
Police had not previously identified political animus as a potential factor, but the Duval County GOP issued a statement on Twitter on Feb. 8. “We are outraged by this senseless act of violence toward our great volunteers,” Duval GOP Chairman Dean Black said in the statement. “The Republican Party of Duval County will not be intimidated by these cowards and we will not be silenced.”
Duval County is a swing district that narrowly went for President Trump in 2016.
Republican Party Chairman Ronna McDaniel also tweeted about the incident on Feb. 8, writing, “These unprovoked, senseless attacks on @realDonaldTrump‘s supporters need to end.”