At a wine festival over the weekend, a 41-year-old woman was arrested after she allegedly threw a drink at Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz. A misdemeanor battery complaint and a felony battery charge against an elected person have been filed against Selena Chambers.
According to the court record, Chambers was allowed to post bond and be released. Gaetz applauded the Walton County Sheriff’s Office for their “swift action” in a statement put on his website on Tuesday, adding that he “will be pressing charges against this individual in order to uphold the civility our community deserves.”
Chambers entered a not-guilty plea. Chambers’ attorney, Matthew Karp, released a statement on Tuesday saying their client “intends to vigorously defend against the allegations of Rep. Gaetz.”
The investigation “has initially shown Rep. Gaetz to have been both an aggressor and agitator,” Karp stated, referring to a “verbal altercation” between the congressman’s group and women in attendance at the festival.
In the statement, he expressed excitement about the opportunity to take the witness’s deposition. On Saturday, Gaetz reportedly informed responding authorities from the Walton County Sheriff’s Office that Chambers and another woman were “cursing” at the congressman and his family.
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According to Gaetz, Chambers then hurled a drink, striking his left shoulder. The police report claims that another partygoer who was speaking with Gaetz at the time of the incident told them that he, too, had been hit and that he was “soaked” with the beverage.
The witness said to the police that Chambers “walked away” after “yelling and flipping him off.” According to the police report, both Gaetz and the man he was talking to walked away from the altercation unharmed.
Chambers admitted to drinking alcohol after she was arrested. Police said she told them, “She was walking and tripped and spilled her drink on Representative Gaetz.” A female companion at the festival reported to police that she swore at Congressman Gaetz as the group left.
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