Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is still recovering from an attack by neighbor Rene Boucher earlier this month that left him with six broken ribs. Paul’s wife spoke out Wednseday, writing on CNN about some of the unkind press coverage of the incident, saying it has been “hurtful” and “victimized Rand a second time as he struggles to recover.”
She says that since the November 3rd attack her husband “has not had a single night's sleep uninterrupted by long periods of difficult breathing or excruciating coughing.”
“It is incredibly hurtful that some news outlets have victimized Rand a second time as he struggles to recover,” she writes, “delighting in hateful headlines like ‘Not A Perfect Neighbor,’ and concocting theories about an ‘ongoing dispute,’ based on nothing more than speculation from an attention-seeking person with no knowledge of anything to do with us.”
She goes on to describe their relationship with Boucher and the nature of the incident:
Neither Rand nor I have spoken to the attacker in 10 years (since before his wife and children moved away) other than a casual wave from the car. Nobody in our family has, nor have we communicated with anyone in his family. With Rand's travel to D.C. in the last seven years, he has rarely seen this man at all.
The only "dispute" existed solely in the attacker's troubled mind, until, on a beautiful autumn day, he ran down the hill on our property and slammed his body into Rand's lower back as he stood facing away, wearing noise canceling headphones to protect his ears from the lawnmower.
This was not a "scuffle," a "fight" or an "altercation," as many in the media falsely describe it. It was a deliberate, blindside attack. The impact left Rand with six broken ribs, three displaced, pleural effusion and now pneumonia. This has been a terrible experience; made worse by the media's gleeful attempts to blame Rand for it, ridiculing him for everything from mowing his own lawn to composting.
MSNBC’s Kasie Hunt apologized to Paul Monday after commenting on air that Paul’s assault was “one of my favorite stories.”
A Louisville-Courier Journal story on the incident characterized Paul as “not a perfect neighbor” although the headline has since been changed.
Rene Boucher, a 59-year-old anesthesiologist from Bowling Green, is charged with misdemeanor assault over the attack. The motive for the attack is still unknown.
“It was a very regrettable dispute between two neighbors over a matter that most people would regard as trivial,” Boucher’s attorney Matthew Baker told reporters. “We sincerely hope that Sen. Paul is doing well and that these two gentlemen can get back to being neighbors as quickly as possible.”