by Steven Ertelt
October 13, 2006
Topeka, KS (LifeNews.com) — A Kansas state lawmaker has been charged with one count of battery for attacking a pro-life advocate at a rally for pro-abortion Gov. Kathleen Sebelius. State Rep. Vaughn Flora, a Democrat, allegedly attacked pro-life advocate Troy Newman at the rally while Newman poked fun at Sebelius over the issue of abortion.
During the September 9 rally, Newman dressed up in a cockroach outfit and donned a Sebelius mask and pretended to be her campaign mascot.
Newman’s actions, which he regarded as political satire, were meant to highlight Sebelius’ veto of a measure that would have provided for more safety regulations on abortion facilities. Newman dressed like a roach because his pro-life group recently purchased a former abortion business and found dead roaches on the floors.
Flora was upset by the antics and tried to grab the Sebelius mask off of Newman’s face, which resulted in cuts and abrasions on Newman from the incident.
If convicted of the class B misdemeanor Flora could serve up to 12 months in prison and face fines just under $1,000.
The Hutchinson News reports that a hearing before Reno County District Magistrate Judge Joe McCarville has been set for November 21.
"As an elected official, his behavior is more than reprehensible. I am shocked at his actions," Newman told the newspaper. "The more I think about what he did … the more I feel that he has a serious problem with controlling his anger."
Flora previously told the newspaper he doubted any charges would be filed in the case.
But Assistant Reno County District Attorney Karen Smart charged Flora with intentionally and unlawfully hurting Newman "in a rude, insulting or angry manner."
Flora has been in the legislature since 1995 and is running unopposed this year.