Carpenter was kicked and punched in the head during Madison protests against racial injustice after he attempted to video a crowd of demonstrators.
Madison Police released a statement about the incident, which occurred just after midnight on June 24 near Main and Fairchild Streets and left Carpenter, 60, requiring surgery, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel said.
In their statement, Madison police described Carpenter as being “sucker punched,” “battered” and beaten “by an angry mob.”
In a July 27 statement, the police thanked the community for their help and said Hamer, 26, and O’Reilly, 33, had turned themselves in. They were both charged with battery with substantial bodily harm and robbery with use of force, according to Dane County Sheriff’s Office records. The pair were both in custody at the Dane County Jail as of Monday, July 27.
Here’s what you need to know:
Hamer’s Employment History Includes Social Work in the Mount Horeb Area School District
One of two women facing charges is a school social worker in the Mount Horeb Area School District, according to the district’s website.
Samantha Hamer’s profile on the district’s official homepage can be found here. As of July 28, Hamer’s profile is still live on the site.
According to the website, in her work Hamer assists “students and families who are struggling with social-emotional needs, behavioral issues, or environmental issues in the family, school and/or community.”
Mount Horeb Schools Superintendent Steve Salerno told Empower Wisconsin that Hamer had been placed on administrative leave following the incident.
“I am sure you can appreciate that we are unable to provide specific information about this matter, as it is a pending investigation. Regardless, any egregious breach in civility must include due process and where appropriate, the very highest levels of accountability,” Salerno said.
Carpenter Shared Video of the Moments Before His Beating
Carpenter was able to capture the moments before the camera was knocked out of his hand and demonstrators started to punch and kick him.
In the video the senator posted, several people run towards Carpenter, who is filming, and appear to knock the camera down before the footage cuts out.
He captioned the video, “I took this pic- it got me assaulted & beat up. Punched/kicked in the head, neck, ribs. Maybe concussion, socked in left eye is little blurry, sore neck & ribs. 8-10 people attacked me. Innocent people are going to get killed. Capitol locked- stuck in office.Stop violence nowPlz!”
Lance Veeser, sports director at WKOW, shared a photo from the scene of Carpenter lying on the ground. “Minutes earlier he told us the protesters assaulted him. Then he collapsed walking towards the Capitol. We called paramedics. An ambulance is here now,” he wrote.
The senator later confirmed on Twitter he had barricaded himself in his office at the State Capitol in Madison after he was attacked by “8-10 people.”
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Carpenter was “stunned” by the violence, as he considered himself an ally of his alleged attackers and had “long fought for the kinds of policies they were seeking.”
President Trump Suggested Carpenter Was ‘Rooting On’ Protesters Before His Assault
President Donald Trump suggested in a cable TV interview that Carpenter incited his own assault, despite video evidence and eyewitness accounts to the contrary, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
Discussing the incident, Trump said, “The person they beat up was a Democrat who happened to be gay and he was probably out there rooting them on or something because Democrats think it’s wonderful they’re destroying our country.”
In response to the president’s comments, Carpenter said, “I don’t know what’s worse, the beating or having someone turn something so personal that happened to you and weaponize it against you.”
The Police Statement Includes a Witness Version of Events
A member of the media recounted in the police statement that around 10 people kicked and punched Carpenter as he lay on the ground. The statement says Carpenter also tried to reason with his attackers and explain who he was.
According to police, a woman identifying as a nurse came to Carpenter’s aid. He reported feeling pain in his “neck, arms, ribs, and head.”
Carpenter was suffering from a concussion and a broken nose, Fox6 reported.
Carpenter told Fox6 he wasn’t angry at his attackers, but seeing surveillance photos of the women “brought up emotions, probably because I never hit anyone in my life. I’ve never been beaten up before. I have separated fights. I just don’t like violence.
“If I got a chance to talk to them, I’d say: ‘I’m not angry at you.’ It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t pay anything for me to be angry. It’s something that happened in the past, but I sure would like to work out that we wouldn’t have any more violence in Madison or Milwaukee, that would be the long-term goal.”
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