Politics

Man charged with slapping 15-year-old Trump supporter

(CNN) — A New Hampshire man was arrested Thursday afternoon and is facing charges after he allegedly slapped a 15-year-old supporter of President Donald Trump outside a polling place during Tuesday’s primary, according to police.

Patrick Bradley, who’s 34, had exited the voting polls outside of Windham High School in Windham, New Hampshire, and walked by a Trump “campaign tent occupied by several campaign supporters/workers,” the Windham Police Department said in a statement Thursday.

He then allegedly assaulted the teenager and two adults who attempted to intervene. CNN has not identified or been in contact with the alleged victims.

“Bradley was also accused of throwing Trump campaign signs and attempting to knock over the aforementioned tent,” the statement says.

Bradley, who was charged with three counts of simple assault and one count of disorderly conduct, entered pleas of not guilty to all four charges Friday morning, said Heather Iworsky, a prosecutor with the Windham Police Department. He was being held on $5,000 cash bail and is due back in court March 4.

It was not immediately clear if Bradley had an attorney.

State GOP Chairman Stephen Stepanek called the incident a “despicable and unacceptable act” and called on state Democrats to condemn it.

“Any effort to intimidate or attack our party volunteers will not deter the thousands of Granite State Republicans who canvass, phone bank and hold signs in support of our candidates between now and November 3rd,” he said.

The incident comes just days after a Florida man told police he had targeted Trump campaign volunteers because he does not like the President.

The man drove a van through a tent in a Walmart parking lot last Saturday in Jacksonville, Florida, where Trump campaign volunteers were gathered. In an interview, police say, Gregory Timm said that before going into the Walmart to get food and a pack of cigarettes, he noticed the tent set up in the parking lot, according to the redacted arrest report by Jacksonville Sheriff’s Department. The arrest report, which was filed in the Duval County Court system, describes Timm showing police a video he took of himself driving toward the tent with the campaign volunteers standing out front.

In the report, police say the video cuts out prior to Timm actually striking the tent, and officers describe Timm as being upset that the video ended before “the good part.” After showing the video to the officers, Timm advised them that “he does not like President Trump.” According to the arrest report, Timm goes on to say, “It’s like someone s–tting on your grave” — what Timm was referencing was unclear due to redactions in the report.

Six Trump campaign volunteers said they were targeted while registering people to vote, according to the Duval County Republican Party and the Trump reelection campaign. No injuries were reported.

This story has been updated to reflect Bradley has pleaded not guilty on Friday.

MORE POLITICS STORIES

Boyfriend of British TV presenter heartbroken by her death

LONDON (AP) — The boyfriend of Caroline Flack, the former British TV host for the controversial reality show “Love Island,” said Sunday that his “heart is broken” at her death as criticism mounted over her treatment by some British media.

British commercial television network ITV said it would not air Sunday’s edition of the show but that it would return on Monday with a tribute to its former host.

Flack, 40, was found dead Saturday at her home in east London after taking her own life, according to a family lawyer. Flack hosted “Love Island” from its launch in 2015 before stepping down in December after being charged with assaulting her 27-year-old boyfriend, Lewis Burton.

Flack denied the charge and was to stand trial next month. She was also not allowed to have any contact with Burton, a bail restriction he objected to. Burton also did not want Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service to go ahead with the trial.

Over the past few months, Flack had been the focus of several negative articles and was trolled across social media for the assault charge. On Sunday, the story of her suicide dominated the front pages of British newspapers.

Beside a picture of them together, Burton said on Instagram that he was in “so much pain.”

He added: “I promise I will ask all the questions you wanted and I will get all the answers nothing will bring you back but I will try make you proud everyday.”

The sixth season of “Love Island” is currently airing and ITV said in a statement that it will not broadcast Sunday’s edition of the show. On Saturday, the commercial network did not air a package of unseen footage from the previous week.

“After careful consultation between Caroline’s representatives and the ‘Love Island’ production team, and given how close we still are to the news of Caroline’s tragic death, we have decided not to broadcast tonight’s ‘Love Island’ out of respect for Caroline’s family,” ITV said in a statement.

ITV said the show will return on Monday and that it will include “a tribute to Caroline who will be forever in our hearts.”

“Love Island” puts young, attractive contestants in a tropical paradise, where they must pair up or risk being exiled. Critics claim the program places vulnerable young people under intense scrutiny and pressure, which is magnified by blanket coverage of the show by tabloids and TV talk shows. Two former “Love Island” contestants, Sophie Gradon and Mike Thalassitis, died by suicide in 2018 and 2019.

Until her arrest, Flack had enjoyed a meteoric career rise after co-hosting Saturday morning children’s television shows. She also hosted companion shows to the popular ITV programs “I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!” and “The X Factor.”

Flack’s career blossomed further after she won the BBC show “Strictly Come Dancing” in 2014, the British version of “Dancing With The Stars.” While hosting “Love Island,” Flack made her West End stage debut in 2018, playing Roxie Hart in the musical “Chicago.”

Her death led to a flood of tributes from fellow TV hosts and criticism of her treatment by the media. The Sun tabloid, for example, removed negative online articles about her soon after her death was announced.

Talent agent Jonathan Shalit told BBC radio that Flack received “more negative press than a terrorist or a paedophile” over the trial.

“These people might be famous, but they’re still vulnerable individuals,” Shalit said.

By Sunday evening, an online petition calling for a government inquiry into “the practices and policies of mainstream media organisations and social media platforms in their efforts to protect members of the public from harm” had garnered more than 191,000 signatures.

The Crown Prosecution Service has also come under criticism for pushing ahead with the trial in the face of Burton’s opposition, particularly from Flack’s management’s company.

“The CPS should look at themselves today and how they pursued a show trial that was not only without merit but not in the public interest,” said Francis Ridley of Money Talent Management. “And ultimately resulted in significant distress to Caroline.”

MORE STORIES

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK