Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul’s wife is taking a stand for her husband. In an op-ed published by CNN, Kelley Paul accuses the media of mistreating her husband in the weeks since he was badly injured in an attack by his next-door neighbor.
Paul’s neighbor, 59-year-old Rene Boucher, has been charged with misdemeanor fourth-degree assault, reported Fox News. He was released from jail on a $7,500 bond after police say he tackled Paul on Nov. 3 as he mowed his grass. He has pleaded not guilty.
“It is incredibly hurtful that some news outlets have victimized Rand a second time as he struggles to recover,” wrote Paul “delighting in hateful headlines like ‘Not A Perfect Neighbor,’ and concocting theories about an ‘ongoing dispute,’ based on nothing more than speculation from an attention-seeking person with no knowledge of anything to do with us.”
After the incident, The Louisville-Courier Journal ran a story titled “Rand Paul is not a perfect neighbor, says community developer.” The headline was later changed.
Likewise, The Washington Examiner ran a story titled “Rand Paul and neighbor had ongoing dispute about yard waste before assault,” which seemed to infer the attack was at least partly Paul’s attack.
Kelley Paul categorically said that the attack was not apart of an ongoing fight between the two men. In the op-ed, she says it had been ten years since Rand or anyone else in their family spoke to the attacker.
“The only ‘dispute’ existed solely in the attacker's troubled mind, until, on a beautiful autumn day, he ran down the hill on our property and slammed his body into Rand's lower back as he stood facing away, wearing noise-canceling headphones to protect his ears from the lawnmower,” wrote Paul.
She continued, “This was not a ‘scuffle,’ a ‘fight’ or an ‘altercation,’ as many in the media falsely describe it. It was a deliberate, blindside attack. The impact left Rand with six broken ribs, three displaced, pleural effusion and now pneumonia.”
She also described the way the injury has impacted Rand. She wrote that since the November 3rd attack, her husband has “not taken a single one without pain,” and he has not had a single uninterrupted night of sleep because of difficulty breathing or an “excruciating” cough.
“There have been several nights where I had my hand on my phone ready to call 911 when his breathing became so labored it was terrifying,” added Paul.
While Paul was obviously still injured, he insisted on flying back to Washington D.C. to vote. While returning home, he had a 102.5 fever and he ended up being diagnosed with pneumonia shortly after.
“This has been a terrible experience,” wrote Kelley Paul, “made worse by the media's gleeful attempts to blame Rand for it, ridiculing him for everything from mowing his own lawn to composting.”
The exact motive for the attack still remains a mystery. Paul told the police that Boucher came onto his property and attacked him. Boucher’s attorney claimed that the attack had nothing to do with Boucher’s Democratic political affiliation.
According to the police report, Paul “told police that his neighbor came onto his property and tackled him from behind, forcing him to the ground and causing pain.” The report also said, “the defendant admitted going onto Paul’s property and tackling him.”
“The unfortunate occurrence of November 3rd has absolutely nothing to do with either's politics or political agendas,” said Matthew J. Baker, an attorney for Boucher. “It was a very regrettable dispute between two neighbors over a matter that most people would regard as trivial. We sincerely hope that Senator Paul is doing well and that these two gentlemen can get back to being neighbors as quickly as possible.”
Paul’s wife concluded her op-ed by bemoaning that Paul won’t be able to participate in the usual Thanksgiving activities. However, she said the couple would still be thankful for everyone who has prayed and supported them during this trying time.
“This Thanksgiving weekend, instead of playing golf with his sons or enjoying our annual touch football game with family and neighbors, Rand will be in pain. But we will still be grateful for the love of our large and supportive family, and for the encouragement and prayers of hundreds of kind and thoughtful people during these last weeks,” wrote Paul.
What do you think about how the media has treated Rand Paul since his assault? Let us know in the comments. In other news, a top official in the Roy Moore campaign just resigned.