Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) is demanding answers from President Joe Biden’s Attorney General Merrick Garland over the arrest of pro-life activist and Catholic father of seven Mark Houck.
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.”
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