A 66-year-old volunteer for Donald Trump’s presidential effort in Florida says he was assaulted after catching two young men try to steal his campaign signs at an early voting site in Orlando this week.
In an interview with The Daily Caller, retired volunteer Louis Valls said he spent Monday helping the Trump campaign at the South Creek Library, where voters are casting early ballots ahead of the state’s March 15 primary.
At about 4 p.m. on Feb. 29, Valls said two men came out of the library and began pulling his Trump campaign signs out of the ground. Valls said he approached the duo, but was pushed down.
“One of them kind of body-slammed me to the ground…I fell on my face, in grass, on my stomach,” he said.
After standing back up, Valls said he strained a muscle in his leg and fell again — this time on the sidewalk — scraping both hands and his chin.
“They didn’t say anything political,” Valls said. “They just started pulling signs. And laughed and laughed. Especially when I fell on the sidewalk.”
He said the two men jumped into a car, driven by someone else, and sped off.
Valls said an ambulance and law enforcement officers showed up shortly after they left. “Now I realize they didn’t even take the signs,” he said. “They dumped them before they even got too far. So I did get my signs back.”
Luckily, Valls said, a friend who was nearby snapped a photo of the car’s license tag. The sheriff’s office used that to track down the driver and identify the suspects, he said.
Valls said he spoke on Wednesday to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and told them he would like to press charges.
According to an incident report from the sheriff’s office obtained by The Daily Caller, a deputy was dispatched to the library on Monday “in reference to a battery on a person over the age of 65 and a petit theft.”
The report notes that Valls “had signs and chairs set up and was volunteering for the Trump campaign during the time of the incident.”It didn’t identify any suspects, but it said Valls identified the men as “two Hispanic males, approximately 18-22 years of age.”
For now, Valls said he is taking some time to recover and is taking a few days off from volunteering, but hopes to see Trump at an upcoming Florida rally. “I’ve never been so inspired by a candidate like Donald Trump.”
“It’s not right,” Valls said of what happened. “Not only because they were trying to put down Trump — they obviously did not like Trump, and they were trying to put down his message, his campaign — but they physically assaulted me.”