Senator Rand Paul is recovering from five broken ribs and bruises to his lungs after his neighbor attacked him outside his Kentucky home on Friday. His injuries are severe enough that it’s unclear whether he will return to Washington.
According to a police arrest warrant, state troopers were called to Paul’s Bowling Green house at 3:21 p.m., where they arrested 59-year-old Rene Albert Boucher and charged him with fourth degree assault. Paul told responding officers that “his neighbor came into his property and tackled him from behind, forcing him to the ground and causing pain.” In a statement Sunday, Paul’s chief of staff, Doug Stafford, detailed the extent of Paul’s injuries, which include five fractured ribs, three of which are partly or completely cracked.
“This type of injury is caused by high velocity severe force. It is not clear exactly how soon he will return to work, as the pain is considerable as is the difficulty in getting around, including flying,” Stafford said.
Paul, for his part, sent a tweet on Sunday morning:
It’s unknown why Boucher, an anesthesiologist, was motivated to attack Paul, though some have speculated that his liberal views may have potentially played a part.
Jeff Jones, a nurse who used to work with Boucher, told the Washington Post that “He was active on social media and said some negative things about the Republican agenda.” Another mutual acquaintance described Boucher as a socialist, saying that “He’s pretty much the opposite of Rand Paul in every way.”
Police said Boucher admitted to attacking Paul, who according to neighbors was mowing his lawn at the time.
Boucher was released from Warren County jail on Sunday on a $5,000 bond.