Man says he was beaten at Donald Trump rally for holding ‘Republicans against Trump’ sign
The man whose protest led to Donald Trump being rushed off stage by Secret Service agents on Saturday night says the Republican nominee’s supporters beat him for holding a ‘Republicans against Trump’ sign.
“I literally just had one sign that said ‘Republicans against Trump’ and when I pulled out the sign, people around me were trying to grab the sign,” Reno native Austyn Crites.
Crites says he was then physically attacked my members of the audience.
“Bam, I get tackled by all these people who are just like kicking me, grabbing me in the crotch and just beating the crap out of me,” he said.
Crites says someone yelled “something about a gun” and that was when things really got ugly.
READ MORE: Donald Trump rushed off stage at rally
“People are just kicking me, grabbing my arms, twisting them,” Crites said. “I’m very thankful for the law enforcement who was able to quickly come, because had they not been there, it’s possible that these people could have strangled me and killed me right on the spot.”
WATCH: Trump hustled away from stage after protester rushes stage
At the same time as the melee began, Trump was quickly hustled off stage by Secret Service agents.
The Secret Service later issued a release which said, immediately in front of the stage, an unidentified individual shouted, “gun!”
“Upon a thorough search of the subject and the surrounding area, no weapon was found.”
Crites has been a registered member of the Republican Party since 2011.
“I’m actually a Republican,” he said.
“I’m a Republican and have been supporting Republican candidates for quite some time but I just don’t support Donald Trump.”
Crites says Trump is to blame for building the type of environment which would provoke the attacks and used some fairly strong language about Trump.
“People who are fascists, people who are dictators – they culminate this type of an environment,” he said. “They just get people absolutely ape.”
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