The wife of Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) has filed a criminal complaint against the alleged organizer of a protest outside their Fairfax County, Virginia, home.
Erin Hawley filed a complaint against Patrick Young, an activist who is part of the Black Lives Matter-affiliated group ShutDownDC. A police spokesperson told ABC News that “probable cause” was found to issue a summons for Young.
Young told ABC on Feb. 5 that he hadn’t yet received the complaint, which was filed in Fairfax County.
According to video footage, at least 20 people gathered at the Hawley home on Jan. 4—two days before the joint session of Congress—while Hawley’s wife and their newborn daughter were at home. The protest was ostensibly organized due to Hawley’s public statements that he would challenge the electoral votes for Pennsylvania.
The Missouri Republican wrote at the time on Twitter, “Tonight while I was in Missouri, Antifa scumbags came to our place in DC and threatened my wife and newborn daughter, who can’t travel. They screamed threats, vandalized, and tried to pound open our door. Let me be clear: My family & I will not be intimidated by left-wing violence.”
The crowd yelled “shame on you” and “stand up, fight back” in front of their home. Protesters also knocked on the door, according to footage and Erin Hawley.
“The doorbell rang, and from downstairs, I could hear loud noises at the door: knocking, stomping, shouting, or some combination,” Erin Hawley wrote in her statement, according to the Washington Examiner. “I went upstairs to see what was happening. … The protestors were screaming with bullhorns and shouting ‘Come out, come out!’ I was frightened.”
Young told ABC News that the incident was a “candlelight vigil” and said the complaint was harassment.
“If a summons has been issued, it is outrageous that a rich and powerful person—a United States senator—can go to their magistrate to get a summons to harass a normal person,” Young said.
On the ShutDownDC website, a post reads: “None of us have actually received any formal notification of a summons, but we need to hire lawyers to defend us in court.”
Video footage taken from the scene shows the senator’s wife opening the front door and telling the crowd to “clear out please.”
“We’ve got neighbors and a baby, thank you,” she is heard saying in the video.
Minutes later, a protester says via a bullhorn that “a few of us are going to go up [to] knock on his door, we can maybe leave some signs, and we’ll leave a copy of [the] Constitution in the hopes that Sen. Hawley actually reads it … and he quits his dangerous attack on our democracy.”
According to The Hill, the group ultimately left after police arrived and told them that demonstrating outside the house was illegal.
ShutDownDC’s website states that it uses “strategic direct action to advance justice and hold officials accountable. … We’re a growing movement and we’re getting ready to show up for each other this week, to preserve the pillars of democracy and fight for a better future.”
The group’s Twitter page includes numerous anti-Hawley posts, as well as messages that are critical of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who opposed the electoral votes for Arizona.