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Senator Rand Paul Seriously Assaulted Outside Home

Late last week, Senator Rand Paul was attacked by his neighbor in an incident that now appears to be a rather serious case of assault:

WASHINGTON — Senator Rand Paul suffered five broken ribs and bruises to his lungs in an altercation with a neighbor on Friday at his home in Bowling Green, Ky., one of the senator’s advisers said on Sunday. The injuries, which the adviser said left Mr. Paul in considerable pain, appear to be much worse than the “minor” injuries that the police had reported on Saturday.

Doug Stafford, a senior strategist to Mr. Paul, said in a statement that it was unclear when the senator would be able to return to work.

According to a criminal complaint, Mr. Paul told the police that he was tackled from behind after the neighbor entered his property, NBC News has reported. The senator also had cuts to his nose and mouth and had trouble breathing because of the rib injuries, the complaint said. Mr. Stafford attributed the injuries to “high-velocity severe force.”

The Kentucky State Police arrested the neighbor, Rene Boucher, 59, and took him to the Warren County Regional Jail, where he was released on $7,500 bond. Mr. Boucher, an anesthesiologist who invented a rice-filled vest used for back pain, has a court date set for Thursday. It is unclear what set off the altercation.

In a tweet on Sunday, Mr. Paul referred to the episode as an “unfortunate event” and thanked his well-wishers for their support

On Saturday, a spokeswoman for Mr. Paul said the senator had been “blindsided” but was “fine.” Mr. Stafford’s statement alluded to a more severe kind of attack: “Displaced rib fractures can lead to life-threatening injuries,” he said. “This type of injury is also accompanied by severe pain that can last weeks to months.” Three of Mr. Paul’s broken ribs were displaced, Mr. Stafford said.

Mac Douglas, who lives about 100 yards away from Mr. Paul, said on Sunday that he was shocked to hear about the altercation, and that Mr. Paul and Mr. Boucher had been courteous neighbors. Mr. Douglas described the neighborhood as calm and secluded, and a place where residents did not regularly interact

“It’s unusual when you see a senator and a doctor having problems,” Mr. Douglas said.

Still, one of Mr. Paul’s neighbors told a local news outlet that Mr. Paul and Mr. Boucher had “ongoing problems.” Mr. Paul was mowing his lawn at the time of the altercation, the neighbor said.

Jeremy Hodges, a Kentucky State Police trooper, said on Sunday that the preliminary investigation of the attack was finished, and that the police were waiting for court proceedings. Mr. Hodges said that Mr. Boucher had been charged with misdemeanor assault, in part because no weapon was used in the attack.

“There’s always a chance that the victim, if he sought medical treatment and it’s a more serious injury, that the charges can go up,” Trooper Hodges added.

He declined to comment on a possible motive for the attack.

While we don’t know the motivation for the attack, it does appear that Boucher may have had some political motive in mind:

Jeff Jones, a registered nurse who worked with Boucher at the Bowling Green Medical Center, described Boucher’s politics as “liberal.

“He was active on social media and said some negative things about the Republican agenda,” Jones said.

“I think it was unfortunate that they lived so close together,” he added.

A Facebook page that appeared to be Boucher’s included links to articles and memes critical of President Trump and a news article about a Montana Republican congressional candidate who attacked a reporter the day before winning his seat. The page said Boucher is a former Army pain-management specialist and graduated from the College of Osteopathic Medicine in Des Moines in 1984

By late Saturday, the page had been overrun by other Facebook users criticizing Boucher for the alleged assault. On Sunday, the page appeared to be blocked from public view.

Jim Bullington, a former member of the city commission, knows both men. He said Sunday that Boucher is divorced and lives alone. Bullington described Boucher as a socialist.

“He’s pretty much the opposite of Rand Paul in every way,” Bullington said in an interview.

The neighbors had been known to have “heated discussions” about health care, Bullington said, adding that Boucher is an advocate of a national health system.

Paul, an outspoken libertarian, voted last summer against a Republican plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act, saying the plan didn’t go far enough in repealing the 2010 health-care law.

Robert Porter, a friend of Paul’s, said late Saturday that the senator was mowing his lawn moments before the attack.

Paul and Boucher live side by side along a small lake in Rivergreen, a close-knit gated community with large houses. On Sunday afternoon, nobody answered at Boucher’s home. Next door at the Paul residence, four people were seen doing yard work. Other neighbors were out walking, enjoying the unseasonably warm weather.

Given the nature of Paul’s injuries, the initial charges against Boucher seem fairly tame, but there is a possibility that they reflect just what the arresting officers could prove with probable cause at the time of the arrest. He could see charges against him upgraded at a later date. Additionally, local media is reporting that the F.B.I. is investigating the matter alongside Kentucky State Police and local authorities. The reason for Federal involvement are unclear at this time, but there are circumstances under which an attack like this against a Federal official such as a Senator could result in Federal charges along with whatever charges he may face in state court. If that happens, the Boucher could be facing some serious jail time in connection with this case.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Ben Wolf says:

    We will see more of this.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  2. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Ben Wolf:
    More developments in this case? Or more instances of people assaulting politicians?
    Frankly I would be shocked if no one makes an attempt on Cheeto-Dick.
    You cannot intentionally piss off so many people and not expect some kind of blow-back.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  3. Frankly I would be shocked if no one makes an attempt on Cheeto-Dick.

    You might want to be careful about making such comments. #JustSayin

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  4. gVOR08 says:

    I have no more idea what happened here than anyone else at this point, but Rand Paul does come off as an ignorant ass, and totally self righteous in his ignorance. I could see where trying to discuss anything with him, politics, or whether he could please keep his dog off of your lawn, could be a maddening experience.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  5. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    OT…
    Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who met with Donnie Jr., has now outlined the quid pro quo.
    https://www.bloomberg.com/amp/news/articles/2017-11-06/trump-jr-said-anti-russia-law-may-be-reviewed-moscow-lawyer-says

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  6. Franklin says:

    @gVOR08: Regardless, Boucher didn’t help his cause here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  7. Hal_10000 says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:

    TBF, I wouldn’t trust Veselnitskaya as far as I could throw her. She’s a Putin stooge. But … the Trump people having met with a Putin stooge at all is a huge problem. And if that kind of quid-pro-quo can be confirmed … this scandal would really blow up.

    Back to the topic at hand …

    I want to see more info about this before I buy into the “liberals are trying to murder Republicans” narrative being pushed. I suspect, since they were neighbors, there’s more to it than a political dispute.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  8. MarkedMan says:

    I agree with the sentiment that it’s too early to pass judgement. Rand Paul is a very odd character, with a lot of extremely sketchy associates. It will be interesting to see whether or not he presses charges, as that may be an indication that there is more to the story than what we know now.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  9. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Hal_10000:

    TBF, I wouldn’t trust Veselnitskaya as far as I could throw her.

    Of course…but you cannot trust the other players either.
    It’s interesting that she would put this out there…are they trying to pressure the Comb-Over? They still want the Magnitsky Act gone.
    And what if one of those un-trustworthy folks just happened to be wearing a wire?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  10. michael reynolds says:

    Why is Paul downplaying this?

    Why are the charges filed so minimal?

    There’s something else going on here.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

  11. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @michael reynolds:
    Right? Who knew that the Aqua-Buddha even had ribs???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  12. KM says:

    Paul and Boucher live side by side along a small lake in Rivergreen, a close-knit gated community with large houses.

    If people are taking swings at each other in a gated community, you know there’s been a problem for a while. These are the types of people to settle things with lawyers, not fists. That Paul’s not got people out talking about what an innocent victim he is kinda hints that he’s not as innocent as he’d like to be in this. That everybody was chill a day later means this wasn’t even a blip on the radar…. or maybe that they just don’t care a Senator got a beatdown 100ft away.

    Still, broken ribs suck. In the interests of karma and being a decent person, feel better Senator. May you learn something about the healthcare system the same way McCain and Kimmel have and turn your negative into a positive.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1

  13. Gustopher says:

    Was Rand Paul screwing his neighbor’s wife, dog or horse?

    That seems at least as likely as the political motive that people keep suggesting. Paul has had terrible politics forever, and has had this neighbor for some time, so something must have been the trigger.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  14. Gustopher says:

    @Doug Mataconis: I’m honestly surprised there wasn’t a serious attempt on Obama’s life. The first black president drove a lot of people crazy, and those crazy people were the people with guns.

    Also a bit surprised that none of the “LOCK HER UP” crowd took a shot at Clinton.

    We are a country with poor mental health treatment, an enormous number of guns, and a major “news” network devoted to stirring up hatred and resentment. Along with everything Cheeto Dick is doing to throw red meat to his base. I would expect more violence.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  15. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Hal_10000: Yeah, they are neighbors. I find it difficult to believe (at this point in time) it had anything to do with politics. I find it much more likely Rand was getting randy with Boucher’s wife and I have no evidence at all for that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  16. Neil Hudelson says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Agreed. I’m from a very small town, where everyone knows everyone else and we are super polite to each others faces (similar to a gated community.) While political arguments can and do get super heated, they almost never–never–result in blows. Because then you are “that guy” to whole community.

    Now, boinking your neighbor’s wife or letting your dog shit on someone’s lawn? Now that will result in fisticuffs.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  17. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Neil Hudelson: I live out in the boonies of Trumpistan. I have an “Impeach Trump” bumper sticker on my truck. On my forays into town for groceries, mail, gas, etc, I have never gotten so much as a dirty look. (that I have seen) (tho I was once called a Ni**er Lover in ’08 for my Obama yard sign). Small towns are like that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  18. MBunge says:

    @Hal_10000: I want to see more info about this before I buy into the “liberals are trying to murder Republicans” narrative being pushed.

    I think one attempted mass murder of GOP Congressmen should be enough to keep that narrative going for a good long while. Of course, that requires we actually remember the attempted mass murder of GOP Congressman.

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 13

  19. michael reynolds says:

    @MBunge:
    Was that the one where gun-loving, NRA bribe-taking Congressmen were shot? I’d prefer to remember the one where people at an outdoor concert were massacred by one of the men those Congressmen armed. Or perhaps our latest NRA=sponsored atrocity in Texas. Or. . . Or. . . Or. . .

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2

  20. MBunge says:

    @Hal_10000: TBF, I wouldn’t trust Veselnitskaya as far as I could throw her. She’s a Putin stooge. But … the Trump people having met with a Putin stooge at all is a huge problem. And if that kind of quid-pro-quo can be confirmed … this scandal would really blow up.

    If saying we might look into something qualifies as quid pro quo, there’s going to be a lot of people in Washington in very serious trouble.

    But you are 1000% correct that if what she’s saying is true, that’s incredibly inappropriate behavior that could conceivably be blown up into a major scandal. The problem is that when you’ve already spent a year screaming every day about Trump/Russia collusion and all you come up with is a meeting which resulted in nothing actually happening…

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 12

  21. MBunge says:

    @michael reynolds:

    So, the butt hurt now prevents you from having a simple discussion about ANYTHING? There is a difference between horrible violence and horrible violence with an explicit political/partisan agenda. I think if the New York Times can still try to link Sarah Palin to Gabby Gifford’s shooting six years later despite there being no evidence supporting that allegation, we shouldn’t need more than one actual lefty-killing-Republicans incident to keep that narrative going.

    Mike

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 13

  22. michael reynolds says:

    @MBunge:
    You don’t discuss, Mike, you regurgitate the Breitbart line of the day and once challenged you run away. Did you ever answer Hudelson’s question? There’s no discussion with a cultist. Your mind is dead.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

  23. MarkedMan says:

    @MBunge:

    There is a difference between horrible violence and horrible violence with an explicit political/partisan agenda.

    I’ve never agreed with this. The primary mover for premeditated murder of innocents is that the perpetrator is a sick f*ck who gets off on murder and mayhem. Some sick f*cks need to package their depraved drives up in religious or political wrapping paper, but that’s just to hide what lies within.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  24. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @MBunge:

    a meeting which resulted in nothing actually happening…

    You cannot look at the timeline and be absolutely positive that nothing actually happened unless you are mentally incapacitated…as a Trump voter, that is a given for you.
    Mr. Mueller will explain it all for you in due time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  25. Mister Bluster says:

    @MBunge:..There is a difference between horrible violence and horrible violence with an explicit political/partisan agenda.

    Maybe to you but the corpses don’t know a difference. They are all equally dead

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  26. the Q says:

    If i read the article correctly it mentioned the neighbor lives alone and is divorced.

    And Rand mowing his own lawn?

    I guess he’s too cheap to buy health coverage for his servants.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  27. JohnMcC says:

    @the Q: We both perked up at the same two factoids.

    And, although I never could claim to be an ‘innocent’, I never considered a romantic trio.

    Always think of the most obvious answer first, eh?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  28. John430 says:

    @gVOR08: While I am not a fan of pere et fils Pauls, both Rand and Boucher are physicians and obviously, the “ignorance” of Rand Paul transfers to you

    @Gustopher: Surprize! Seems like only leftists advocate violence. Rand Paul was also at the ball field when the Bernie-supporting nutjob shot Rep. Scalise.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 12

  29. MarkedMan says:

    Just did a google search on “Rand Paul’s Temper” and he admits he has a problem controlling his temper. I wonder if we will ever know what happened?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  30. pylon says:

    I’m holding out hope that it’s a lovers fight.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  31. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @John430:

    Seems like only leftists advocate violence.

    Yes, that nice young man Dylann Roof never would have shot those poor people in that church if his mind hadn’t been poisoned by all the hate speech of the Lieberals. And those nice, law abiding young men who showed up in support of a Robert E Lee statue (who we all know was very opposed to violence in any form) in Charlottesville VA ? Those weren’t shields and clubs they were carrying, those were very large frisbees and pogosticks for their after the speeches game of pogostick frisbee football.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  32. Jen says:

    According to the Washington Post, the dispute “had ‘absolutely nothing to do with either’s politics or political agendas’ and was merely ‘a very regrettable dispute between two neighbors over a matter that most people would regard as trivial.'”

    Curious.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  33. Gustopher says:

    @John430:

    Surprize! Seems like only leftists advocate violence. Rand Paul was also at the ball field when the Bernie-supporting nutjob shot Rep. Scalise.

    Surprise! Only leftists can spell “Surprise!”.

    On a more serious note, we have a country with a crapload of angry people and a crapload of guns. There are violent, unstable loons on both sides, and the main thing they have in common is access to guns. The gun fetishists who like it that way are mostly on the right though.

    If gun-grabbing leftists like me had our way, your Bernie-supporting nutjob would have had to try for a mass stabbing of Republicans playing baseball.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  34. Modulo Myself says:

    @Jen:

    So it was either years of each guy quietly screwing with the other’s property, or it was about sex.

    Love the descriptions of the neighborhood–it’s ‘close knit’, although residents ‘did not regularly interact’.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  35. Jen says:

    @Modulo Myself: It does not appear to be about sex. Unless “plantings or flora issues” is a euphemism.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  36. al-Ameda says:

    @MBunge:

    The problem is that when you’ve already spent a year screaming every day about Trump/Russia collusion and all you come up with is a meeting which resulted in nothing actually happening…

    I do believe I detect the scent of collusion in the air.
    It’s Mueller Time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  37. Franklin says:

    @Jen: I thought I read earlier it was about yard waste. Kind of funny. Although I suppose Paul shouldn’t laugh too hard right this minute.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  38. gVOR08 says:

    @Franklin:

    Although I suppose Paul shouldn’t laugh too hard right this minute.

    Sounds like we need a “Send a Joke to Cheer Up Rand” campaign.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  39. Franklin says:

    Story keeps getting weirder. Maybe caused by Paul’s pumpkin patch???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0