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Occupy protester: Assault by Gingrich staffer caused medical problems

By David Edwards
Thursday, January 19, 2012 8:24 EDT
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Rebecca Burton says she was assaulted by Newt Gingrich staffer
 
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An Occupy Wall Street protester says that an assault by a staffer for Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich has left her suffering from various medical problems.

Police in Manchester, New Hampshire have been investigating allegations that Rebecca Burton was violently shoved and grabbed by a middle-aged white man wearing an earpiece at a Gingrich town hall event last week.

Quinn Bowman, a reporter for PBS Newshour, was at the event and witnessed the incident.

“Man w earpiece at Gingrich event in Manchester struggles violently to get sign out of female occupier’s hands,” Bowman tweeted at the time.

“He pushed and shoved her with considerable force, tried to take her sign and he seemed enraged that she was there,” he later told BuzzFeed.

After “a lot” of back and shoulder pain, Burton finally went to the doctor last Wednesday.

“The doctor I saw Wednesday night said that my shoulder muscle and lower back were injured during the struggle, and similar to when someone is hit from behind in a car accident, the shock and suddenness of the attack can delay the pain for a day or two,” she told Raw Story.

“I have a high-deductible, self-pay medical plan, so I am very much hoping that there isn’t any further treatment necessary,” Burton added. “I haven’t missed work — I’m self-employed and a single mom, and I need to be at work. It’s hard to focus and I’ve had some trouble sleeping, though that seems to be improving.”

Although she had told Manchester police responding to the scene that she wanted to press charges, officials could not locate the case when she called to follow up Monday.

“Tuesday morning I received a call from the detective assigned to investigating the case, once again asking if I was sure I wanted to press charges, because it involved a lot of paperwork (on his part) and possibly a trip back up to Manchester from Hartford (on mine),” Burton wrote on her blog. “I reiterated that yes, I still wanted to press charges.”

She left several messages with the detective assigned to the case, but Burton had not heard back from him again as of Tuesday afternoon. The department’s public information officer had also not responded to Raw Story by the time of publication.

“None of this had to happen — normal people have dialogues,” she lamented in an email to Raw Story. “In my world, violence isn’t typically the first line of communication. It’s troubling to think that Newt’s presidential campaign staff react this way. What does that say about a Gingrich presidency?”

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
 
 
 
 
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