Erin Hawley, the wife of Missouri Senator Josh Hawley has filed a criminal complaint against an activist member of the group ShutDownDC who allegedly organized a group that targeted her home, where she was staying with her newborn daughter.
ABC News reported a police spokesman said a local magistrate in Fairfax County found enough “probable cause” to issue a summons directed against Patrick Young, who was charged with a misdemeanor count of illegally demonstrating at Hawley’s Vienna, Virginia, home on January 4. Josh Hawley was in Missouri with his two sons at the time, but his wife and newborn daughter were at the Virginia home.
“[B]ased on a citizen, the magistrate issued a summons for a defendant for a violation of Virginia Code 18.2-419 (picketing or disrupting tranquility of home), a Class 3 misdemeanor,” the police spokesman told ABC News. Josh Hawley’s communications director, Kelli Ford, informed ABC News. “Because of the attacks in the media and from the left over the past few weeks, Josh’s family has been the subject of numerous threats on their lives that are being monitored by authorities,” The Blaze reported.
Hawley tweeted on January 4, “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 leftwing violence.”
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 leftwing violence
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) January 5, 2021
Video of the incident shows as many as 20 members of the group outside the home only feet from the door of the residence, shouting and using bullhorns. In her statement, Erin Hawley said, “[T]he doorbell rang, and from downstairs, I could hear loud noises at the door: knocking, stomping, shouting, or some combination. I went upstairs to see what was happening. … The protestors were screaming with bullhorns and shouting ‘Come out, come out!’ I was frightened.”
A spokesman for the police department said that city ordinances prohibit the use of bullhorns. After an officer with the Vienna Police Department arrived and told the group to disperse because demonstrations outside private residences were not permitted. The group reportedly demonstrated for roughly eight minutes before more officers arrived.
ShutDownDC issued a statement reading, “We are not aware of any summons issued related to our candle light vigil at Senator Hawley’s house. Police on the scene did not believe a crime was committed. That was confirmed by the Vienna Police department in media reports days later. 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.”
The Kansas City Star reported, “The protest of about 15 activists was organized by Shutdown DC. The group posted a more than 50-minute video of what it called a ‘Vigil For Democracy.’ … The video shows activists writing in chalk on the sidewalk, but it doesn’t show any damage to his (Hawley’s) Vienna, Va. home.”