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Matt Gaetz pressing charges against ‘leftist wino’ who threw drink at him

Selena Chambers, 41, has been charged with felony battery after alleged incident over weekend

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
Tuesday 02 May 2023 22:33 BST
Matt Gaetz explains why he is pressing charges against ‘leftist wino’ who threw drink at him

Florida lawmaker Matt Gaetz says he is pressing charges against a “leftist wino” woman who allegedly threw a drink over him at a wine festival in his home state.

Selena Chambers, 41, has been charged with felony battery after allegedly tossing a glass of wine at the Republican politician at an event in northwest Florida on Saturday.

But according to an arrest report made by the Walton County Sheriff’s Office, Ms Chambers insists she “tripped and spilled her drink on Representative Gaetz.”

Selena Chambers, 41, of Tallahassee (Walton County Sheriff’s Office)

Ms Chambers, who is from Tallahassee, Florida, was charged with two counts of battery. One count is a misdemeanour, while the other, battery on an elected official, is a felony in the state.

Her bond was set at $1,000 and she was released from custody the following day.

The congressman said on Tuesday that he pressed charges against the person who “assaulted” him “in order to uphold the civility our community deserves.”

“I will never allow the safety of Northwest Floridians to be comprised,” Mr Gaetz said in a statement.

Matt Gaetz presses charges against woman who allegedly threw drink over him at Florida wine festival (Twitter/Matt Gaetz)

Mr Gaetz then went on to detail the incident on his Firebrand podcast and said it happened as he took pictures and chatted with supporters.

“A lady threw a drink on both of us and she was promptly arrested,” he said, as he thanks the Walton County Sheriff’s Office deputies.

“I want everybody to know why we press charges in circumstances like this. It is quite alright for folks to let their voice be heard with an opinion or a comment, folks can shout and scream all they want. This is America and people ought to be able to say what they believe, what they desire, even offer criticism and critiques of people in public life.

“But if we start to allow stuff to be thrown or hurled, if we allow people to be harmed there is a severe risk of escalation and accident.

“We don’t want to see anyone in harm’s way, whether it’s family members, supporters, or even our detractors, we want them to be safe too.

“But when they cross the Rubicon beyond just words to throwing stuff and striking me and a gentleman I was speaking to with a drink, then that really has caused harm to our community and we want to contain and extinguish.”

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