Attorneys for a Ohio man who is accused of attacking a black woman at a Donald Trump campaign rally last March claimed their client was acting at the behest of the then-candidate.
According to the Guardian, Alvin Bamberger, a 75-year-old Ohio resident and a member of a veterans association, is charged, along with two other Trump boosters, with harassment over the attack on Shiya Nwanguma, .
In video taken at the March rally, Bamberger, Matthew Heimbach and Indiana resident Joseph Pryor can be seen shoving and lashing out at anti-Trump protester Nwanguma after Trump urged the crowd on, telling them, "get ‘em out of here!”
According to University of Louisville student Nwanguma, as she was assaulted she was also being verbally abused, explaining, "I was called a n****r and a c*nt and got kicked out. They were pushing and shoving at me, cursing at me, yelling at me, called me every name in the book. They’re disgusting and dangerous.”
As part of his defense, Bamberger's attorneys stated that their client, "admits only that he touched a woman,” but pinned the blame on Trump.
“Bamberger had no prior intention to act has he did,” the attorneys wrote in their filing. “Bamberger would not have acted as he did without Trump and/or Trump campaign’s specific urging and inspiration. To the extent that Bamberger acted, he did so in response to – and inspired by – Trump and/or Trump campaign’s urging to remove the protesters.”
According to the attorneys, if Bamberger is found liable, Trump or his campaign are also to blame “because Trump and/or Trump campaign urged and inspired Bamberger to act as he did.”
Attorneys for the president dispute the assertion, saying the president “is immune from suit because he is president of the United States.”
Additionally the president's legal team stated Trump’s “get them out of here” remark was not directed at the crowd.
Bamberger previously admitted his involvement, saying the president had inspired him and he was "caught up in the frenzy.".
“Trump kept saying ‘get them out, get them out’ and people in the crowd began pushing and shoving the protesters,” he wrote in a letter to a veterans association. “I was caught up in the frenzy. I physically pushed a young woman down the aisle toward the exit, an action I sincerely regret.”
Video of the attack can be seen below: