Montana congressman misled investigators in assault case

AP News
Posted: Nov 17, 2017 7:03 PM
Montana congressman misled investigators in assault case

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Latest on the assault of a reporter by Montana Rep. Greg Gianforte on the eve of his election (all times local):

5 p.m.

Documents released Friday show a Montana congressman misled investigators about his assault on a reporter and claimed that the "liberal media" was "trying to make a story" out of it.

The documents from Gallatin County law enforcement include notes from an interview of Rep. Greg Gianforte just after the attack, which occurred the day before the Republican's victory in a special election.

Gianforte told an officer that Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs had grabbed Gianforte's wrists and pulled the politician down on top of him.

Multiple witnesses contradicted that account and said Gianforte became enraged at Jacobs for what he perceived as biased coverage. They said Gianforte body slammed the reporter, threw him to the ground and punched him.

Gianforte later pleaded guilty to assault.


3 p.m.

Law enforcement officials in Montana have released a trove of materials from their investigation into a Republican House candidate who assaulted a reporter on the eve of his election to the U.S. House.

More than 100 pages of documents, photos and audio from the investigation into Rep. Greg Gianforte were released under a court order Friday following requests from The Associated Press and other news organizations.

Gianforte threw Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs to the ground on May 24 — the day before his victory in a special election over Democrat Rob Quist.

In the attack's immediate aftermath, the Republican's campaign portrayed Jacobs as the instigator. That version of events was contradicted audio from Jacobs and by a Fox News reporter who witnessed the attack.

Gianforte later pleaded guilty to assault.