Florida’s Hialeah Mayor Esteban Bovo, a Republican, debates whether the brutal thrashing had political undertones.
After a canvasser for Sen. Marco Rubio’s reelection campaign in Hialeah, Florida, was assaulted on the street, police made one arrest.
Rubio claimed in a tweet on Monday that the canvasser was accosted Sunday evening by four individuals who allegedly told him that Republicans were not permitted in their neighborhood.
‘Last night one of our canvassers wearing my T-shirt and a cap with ‘Florida Gov. Ron’ Desantis’sic’ on it was violently attacked by 4 beasts who told him Republicans weren’t welcome in their area in #Hialeah #Florida,” Rubio wrote on Facebook. He had facial reconstruction surgery and suffered internal hemorrhage in addition to having a broken jaw.
Javier Lopez has been named as one of the attack’s suspects in a police report obtained by Local 10 News. According to the allegation, Lopez allegedly blocked the sidewalk as the canvasser attempted to pass. When the canvasser attempted to move around Lopez by moving to the opposite side of the street, Lopez allegedly yelled, “You can’t pass by here, this is my neighborhood.”
An argument followed the victim’s statement that it was public property and that he had a right to be there, at which point Lopez allegedly charged at him, grabbed him, and threw him to the ground.
Although it was stated in the police report that a third party once intervened by kicking Lopez in the face before escaping, no more attackers were mentioned in the attack. According to the complaint, Lopez continued his assault on the canvasser by repeatedly striking him in the face.
The canvasser experienced “serious edema” on his face, “extreme swelling and bleeding” from being struck in the mouth, as well as “swelling shut” of his right eye.
“We’re going to let police perform their own investigation and determine if it was driven by political motivation or by hate,” Sgt. Jose Torres of the Hileah police told AA1.
Fox News has contacted the Hialeah Police Department and is awaiting a response in order to learn more.
Over 236,000 people call Hialeah, a city in Miami-Dade County, South Florida, home. Republican Esteban Bovo serves as the city’s mayor.
According to Bovo, who spoke to the canvasser’s father, the canvasser’s condition is getting better, as reported by Fox News. The probe is “looking at others that may have participated,” the mayor added.
Bovo said he didn’t want to make assumptions about the attack’s political motivation.
But we are aware of the realities, he continued. He was canvassing while sporting a DeSantis hat and a Rubio T-shirt, and while doing so, he was badly attacked.
Christopher Monzon, the canvasser who was named by WSVN and other local media, had ties to several White supremacist movements. He acknowledged using racial slurs in the past in a 2021 interview, , but he made an effort to remove himself. I do not support using such terminology. Even if I may have used the words in the past, I no longer think it is acceptable to use those insults.
Rep. Val Demings, a Democrat and former Orlando police chief, and Rubio are locked in a close contest. Her campaign condemned the assault.
A representative for the Demings campaign issued a statement to Fox News saying, “Chief Demings strongly condemns all acts of violence and the perpetrators should be prosecuted to the maximum extent of the law.” “We’re praying for a swift recovery for the canvasser who was attacked last night. Campaign workers need to feel comfortable in every area.”
Fox News Digital correspondent Ronn Blitzer covers politics and breaking news.