According to his family, some 20 armed FBI agents in 15 vehicles raided the residence of Houck, who leads a nonprofit group that provides sidewalk counseling at abortion clinics in Philadelphia, over an incident last year involving his then-12-year-old son at a Planned Parenthood abortion facility. Pennsylvania pro-life activist Ashley Garecht told The Daily Wire Houck was protecting his son from an aggressive Planned Parenthood escort harassing the boy, noting that the case was dismissed by a federal court in Philadelphia when the escort tried to press charges.
“If the shocking reports about the FBI arresting a man Friday in rural Pennsylvania are true, then you have a lot to answer for,” Hawley said in the letter to Garland.
“These reports state that federal authorities obtained a warrant under the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act to arrest Mark Houck for allegedly committing a single count of simple assault by pushing a man near an abortion clinic,” he continued. “Houck contends that he only did so to defend his child against the man, and local authorities have already dismissed a separate criminal complaint against Houck for the conduct.”
“Not only did your office turn a local dispute into a national case, but the FBI reportedly executed the search warrant in as extreme a manner as one can image,” the Republican asserted.
“As Houck’s wife said, when they saw 20 or more agents arrest their father at gunpoint, ‘the kids were all just screaming,’” Hawley said. “To say the least, using this kind of force to make an arrest for a single charge of simple assault is unprecedented.”
Hawley positioned the arrest against the DOJ seemingly sleeping on the dozens of attacks against pro-life pregnancy centers and churches by abortion extremists following the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
“I want to know from Merrick Garland directly why Biden’s DOJ is arresting Catholic protestors like terrorists – complete with SWAT-style tactics – while letting actual terrorist acts like firebombings go unpunished,” he said.
“The corruption & abuse of law is out of control,” Hawley stated. “Come January, the new Republican Congress must launch a thorough, public investigation of DOJ & the FBI – from their targeting of parents to religious protestors to political opponents.”
“What Biden is doing is wrong,” the senator slammed. “And dangerous.”
“I believe you must testify, under oath, before the Senate Judiciary Committee about your selective use and apparent political weaponization of the FACE Act,” Hawley wrote to Garland.
The senator also demanded answers “within 10 days” to three questions concerning Houck’s arrest, including why it took 20-25 armed feds to execute an arrest for an alleged simple assault.
The corruption & abuse of law is out of control. Come January, the new Republican Congress must launch a thorough, public investigation of DOJ & the FBI – from their targeting of parents to religious protestors to political opponents. What Biden is doing is wrong. And dangerous
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) September 26, 2022