Attorney Slams FBI Arrest of Pro-Life Advocate: “There Was No Effort to Bring Him in Voluntarily”

National   |   Laurel Duggan   |   Oct 7, 2022   |   4:05PM   |   Washington, DC

Armed FBI agents in unmarked cars arrested a pro-life activist at his home Wednesday as his wife pleaded for answers about the arrest, according to a video filmed by his wife and published by Townhall.

Paul Vaughn is one of 11 defendants facing federal charges under the FACE Act for allegedly blocking the entrance of an abortion clinic in March 2021, and he could face up to 11 years in prison and $350,000 in fines. His prosecution is part of a broader push from the FBI to crack down on pro-life activists while making little progress to combat firebombings and other attacks on pro-life groups.

Four officers wearing vests and carrying guns can be seen walking in font of Vaughn’s house in the Townhall video. One officer throws a jacket to Vaughn in the back seat and another officer closes the door, obscuring Vaughn throughout the video.

“There was no effort to bring him in voluntarily,” Gualberto Garcia Jones, an attorney for the Personhood Alliance, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “They showed up unannounced at around 7 a.m. They were banging on the door so loud that it made the whole house shake and once they did that he came out — he was actually on his way to take seven of his children to school. The FBI agents, all four of them had their weapons drawn: two of them had long guns, two of them had sidearms. They were very, very aggressive, but once his wife took out the phone, they immediately changed their demeanor.”

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Vaughn’s wife begs the officers to explain what’s going on, but they ignore her, according to the video.

“I want to know why you were banging on my door with a gun,” she says in the video. “You’re not gonna tell me anything?”

An officer tells her that he tried to explain to her, which she denies, and the vehicle drives away with Vaughn apparently inside. She then approaches a second vehicle in her driveway and asks an officer outside it for his name repeatedly, but the officer ignores her.

“You’re not gonna give me your name? You’re not gonna give me any information?”

The officer continues to ignore her and another officer drives the vehicle away.

Jones set up a GiveSendGo fundraiser for Vaughn which has raised over $1,000. Jones is not representing Vaughn, but is general counsel for the Personhood Alliance; Vaughn is the president of Personhood Tennessee, which is under their umbrella.
“The event of March 2021 involved several pro-life activists sitting in a hallway outside of an abortion clinic in Tennessee singing hymns, reading scripture, and praying,” the GiveSendGo page read. “For this, the FBI is charging the protesters with violations of the FACE Act which carry sentences of more than 10 years in prison and $250,000.”

The FBI and Vaughn’s attorney did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.