FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — A man allegedly attacked for holding a Donald Trump sign later spoke out about the assault.
Charlie Chase, 82, said he froze when a man pulled over and started screaming at him.
“The guy, when he came at me, I had never seen a horror story … that the face was so filled with hate and anger, as his was,” Chase recalled.
Fall River police say the assault happened Tuesday evening at the rotary by North Main Street and Airport Road.
Eyewitnesses allege the man was angry because Chase was holding a Donald Trump sign. They told police he screamed at Chase, then ripped the sign in half.
“According to the other fella that was with me, I didn’t know that he had lifted me up, but he apparently lifted me up and flung me down on my back on the ground,” Chase added.
Police identified the suspect as Aidan Courtright, 27, who later turned himself in.
Chase had to be taken to the hospital for bruising, after witnesses told police Courtright kicked him with a “leather pointed shoe.”
Chase said he believes nobody should be attacked for their political views.
“If you’ve got something, listen to what they’re saying, figure out whether you agree you don’t agree: ‘Ah some of that’s good, maybe I should change some of the things I think.’ That’s the American way,” he said.
Courtright is facing several charges including assault and battery on a person over 60, as well as a civil rights violation with injury.
A Fall River District Court criminal clerk said a dangerousness hearing for Courtright was held Thursday via video conference. He was released on personal recognizance and ordered not to have contact with the victim or witnesses and not to post anything political online.
Courtright is due back in court August 6.