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22 members of Congress press Garland for answers on arrest of pro-life Catholic activist Mark Houck

By HatetheSwamp
September 27, 2022 3:40 pm
Category: Law

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The letter noted how Houck's wife, Ryan-Marie, described the arrest to Catholic News Agency as a team of roughly 25 federal agents, with guns drawn and in about 15 vehicles, pounding on their front door and allegedly threatening to break it down.

"There is much to learn about the extent of the FBI's operations in this case, apparently since state-level charges were apparently dismissed by local authorities in Philadelphia," the members wrote. "Surely, the FBI must have an extraordinary reason for showing up at the home of an American family, allegedly with roughly 25 heavily armed federal agents, and arresting a father in front of his seven children."

A senior FBI source previously told Fox News there may have been 15-20 agents at the scene.

The agents who came to the door had guns out and at the ready, according to this FBI source...


There's no place for this is America.


Cited and related links:

  1. foxnews.com

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Comments on "22 members of Congress press Garland for answers on arrest of pro-life Catholic activist Mark Houck":

  1. by Donna on September 27, 2022 6:10 pm

    Wow! There must be plenty of videos. Can't wait to see them!



  2. by Curt_Anderson on September 27, 2022 7:29 pm
    Those 22 members of Congress should first determine if the wife's account is accurate before wasting the AG's time.

    “The two-count indictment charges Houck with a violation of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act, which makes it a federal crime to use force with the intent to injure, intimidate, and interfere with anyone because that person is a provider of reproductive health care.”

    The first count alleges that Houck “intentionally injured, intimidated and interfered with B.L.” because the latter “was and had been providing reproductive health services.”

    The second count alleges that Houck “verbally confronted B.L. and forcefully shoved B.L. to the ground in front of the PPC, causing injuries to B.L. that required medical attention.”

    "The modern GOP, the once-tough-on-crime, pro-seniors party that now excuses and covers up violent assault against 72-year-olds" ---Mehdi Hasan @mehdirhasan
    lawandcrime.com


  3. by oldedude on September 28, 2022 6:44 am
    Curt- For a felony assault, I want to see pictures of the "victim" and the injuries. The medical report may be nice too.


  4. by HatetheSwamp on September 28, 2022 6:57 am

    So, Donna, on what basis are you calling this devout Catholic mother of seven, a liar?


  5. by Donna on September 28, 2022 11:05 am

    She's free to corroborate her claims.


  6. by HatetheSwamp on September 28, 2022 11:28 am

    But, until she does, you'll trust Big Brother, eh!?


  7. by Donna on September 28, 2022 11:45 am

    In any situation, when neither side has shown corroborating evidence, I use logic as a guide.

    These thoughts come to mind: Ms. Houck has a clear motive to lie. Also, why would the FBI single out Houck?



  8. by Curt_Anderson on September 28, 2022 12:09 pm
    If you are like Houck, Trump or any criminal defendant and you don't have a good defense of the crime for which you are being investigated the typical criminal response is cry police brutality or complain about jack booted thugs.





  9. by oldedude on September 28, 2022 12:17 pm
    "In any situation, when neither side has shown corroborating evidence, I use logic as a guide."
    I'll agree with that. The abortion clinic has in the past, made outrageous claims to press civil and legal actions against pro-life people. I'm not saying the reality and truth of the situation hasn't been stretched by everyone. Politically, both the suspect and the victim have a major reason to stretch to a lie in this case. As well as the FBI. My question is not about the "arrest." There is some reasonableness about a collection of Agents having their weapons drawn when affecting a fugitive warrant (although this isn't one).

    My biggest question is 1. the veracity of the claim of the "victim" in the abortion clinic since the state dropped the charges after the victim harasses the defendant's child. The second thing is "WHY WAS THE FBI MAKING THE ARREST?" The state had done their investigation and dropped the charges (meaning there was not enough evidence to proceed with the case (see above). This means the FEDERAL DISTRICT COURT was filing the charges. WHY?


  10. by Donna on September 28, 2022 12:22 pm

    "1. the veracity of the claim of the "victim" in the abortion clinic since the state dropped the charges after the victim harasses the defendant's child."

    I read that yesterday. There's something we're not seeing. We'll see if more comes out.


  11. by HatetheSwamp on September 28, 2022 1:14 pm

    If you are like Houck, Trump or any criminal defendant and you don't have a good defense of the crime for which you are being investigated the typical criminal response is cry police brutality or complain about jack booted thugs.

    C'mon, man, gimme a break...nice try, though.

    Houck may be guilty as sin. I don't claim omniscience...as do you.

    But, we're discussing the manner in which Big Brother conducted the arrest.

    Even if you believe the historically corrupt FBI, they took 20 ARMED agents to arrest a father of seven children, with no criminal record, at his home...

    ...oh, and the imbeciles who are defending it.


  12. by Curt_Anderson on September 28, 2022 1:22 pm
    Even if were 20 FBI agents instead of two agents who showed up to arrest Houck, why does it matter? Is it somehow nicer to have fewer arresting agents? Is there a certain number of agents when it become mean?





  13. by HatetheSwamp on September 28, 2022 1:28 pm

    You really don't know?

    Do 22 members of Congress send a letter about every FBI arrest?

    I dunno. Apparently, other people think that what happened is objectionable.

    Are you such a crazy Good German, Big Brother champion that you can't see an issue?

    Or, are you pullin ol pb's leg?


  14. by Curt_Anderson on September 28, 2022 1:42 pm
    No, you tell me. Even assuming that the wife's description of the arrest is not exaggerated and is accurate, what is the issue?

    The 22 members, representing 5% of Congress, are hoping to accomplish what? That the FBI cannot send more than a certain number of agents to make an arrest? That the FBI should never arrest anti-abortion protestors? Reprimand the agents? Other than currying the favor of the Right to Lifers, nothing will come of it.




  15. by oldedude on September 28, 2022 2:37 pm
    "Even if were 20 FBI agents instead of two agents who showed up to arrest Houck, why does it matter?"

    Protocol for a felony arrest will dictate the number of agents. My guess is there were about 15, and to her it seemed like 20-30. You do it because if you take 2 agents and someone gets shot or dead, then it's the ASAC's butt on the line.

    I'm on another facet of the diamond on this one. I would really like to know WHY the federal government is involved in an issue and investigation that was not enough to make it through the state law. If the DA/ police didn't think there was enough, why are the feds stepping in? This makes no sense to me at all.

    My thought is that this is a political move, again by DOJ to chickensht conservatives. Why would they do it? Because they can.


  16. by Curt_Anderson on September 28, 2022 3:52 pm
    OD,
    Even if the assault charges were dropped by the victim, Houck could be and was charged with a violation of a federal statute, namely the FACE Act.

    The Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act of 1994 (FACE) makes it a federal crime to physically obstruct the entrance to a clinic or to use force, the threat of force, or physical obstruction, such as a sit-in, to interfere with, injure, or intimidate clinic workers or women seeking abortions or other reproductive services.


  17. by oldedude on September 29, 2022 5:33 pm
    I've acknowledged that a couple of times. That they "could" but why would they waste their time when the locals investigated and said "no crime to prosecute." Do they have nothing better to do? Are they that bored in Clarksburg they need something to do? I just don't see it plausible unless they were told to through the political lines. Ergo, it's BIDEN'S DOJ.


  18. by HatetheSwamp on September 30, 2022 3:13 am

    Curt,

    Houck is no flight risk, certainly. He is settled in his community. He's raising seven children.

    Clearly, the prosecutor could have contacted his attorney to say, "We're going to bring a FACE charge against your client. We're going to give him the opportunity to turn himself in (say, tomorrow.)" Houck would have done that. What reason do you have to doubt that?

    That's the reasonable way to have done this.

    You want to know why Congress members are concerned? That's why. This is still America.


  19. by oldedude on September 30, 2022 5:36 am
    I agree with that. It's like the obomber FBI perp walking Stone after calling CNN, but not the Trump-hating porn lawyer Michael Avenatti on charges of grand larceny, bank fraud, wire fraud and extortion who didn’t require an FBI strike-force… why is that?

    And Timothy Thibault, the FBI agent accused of political bias over his role in the Hunter Biden laptop investigation, retired from his job on Friday.

    The former Assistant Special Agent in Charge was escorted out of his Washington D.C. office, as is standard practice, according to Fox News.

    Thibault rose to public attention as one of 13 assistant special agents who was investigating Biden's laptop, which the FBI seized in 2019, ahead of the 2020 presidential election."


    Just to be clear... someone that obstructs justice in an election and withhold critical evidence that has implications of national security is allowed to retire from federal service with all his benefits, and the guy that "maybe" had an altercation with a pro-abortion person is publicly arrested.
    centralfloridapost.com
    newsweek.com


  20. by HatetheSwamp on September 30, 2022 6:02 am

    OD,

    The question is why the thugs at the FBI didn't do what's reasonable.

    The only answer coming to my mind point to the FBI's political activism and anti-conservative bias.


  21. by oldedude on September 30, 2022 12:00 pm
    Yeah, the Gestapo did the same thing when they took over Paris. Pulling people out of their house and sometimes actually "arresting" them. The other times, they were just left on the street for everyone to look at. I'm waiting for that point, which may come up pretty soon.


  22. by HatetheSwamp on September 30, 2022 12:09 pm

    I hope you're wrong but it stuns me how many progressives and Dems are celebrating the search at Mar-a-Lago and the many instances of unnecessarily abusive arrests of Trump connected people.

    And, Curt's crazy support of the arrest of this father of seven at his home.

    I've been naíve about this sort of thing many times in my life.

    I just HOPE you're wrong.


  23. by Curt_Anderson on September 30, 2022 1:21 pm
    You must think that being a father of seven is a pass to commit assault and other crimes. It's like your belief that womens' underwear drawers are off limits to search warrants.


  24. by HatetheSwamp on September 30, 2022 4:10 pm

    C'mon man, gimme a break!

    No one is saying that Houck shouldn't be charged, if the prosecutor thinks he committed a crime.

    But, to bring, by the FBI's own account, 15-20 armed agents to arrest this man, who's never been convicted of a crime, to the home where his seven children are living, is uncalled for thuggery.

    This man could have been given a chance to surrender. His wife and children could easily have been spared this ordeal.

    I have to say, Curt, that, in all the Trump rallies I've watched, I have never encountered an Ultra-MAGA more mindlessly and blindly loyal to Trump as you are to your Blue MAGA Big Brother.

    I used to joke about it because I thought you were joshing us but I'm convinced. You're inanely serious.


  25. by Curt_Anderson on September 30, 2022 4:36 pm
    Do you have a link that the FBI said 15-20 agents arrested him? Anyway, it's been a few days and still there is nothing to corroborate Houck's wife's account. No photos or videos of a swarm of of FBI agents.

    I suspect that you and other conservatives have a case of White Privilege and victim mentality. Had this been a similar FBI arrest of a BLM member charged with assault and a federal crime, I doubt you'd be yelping about it.

    In a statement issued Monday, the FBI office denied claims that two dozen armed agents entered the Kintnersville home of Mark Houck, 48, and pointed guns at his wife and seven children on Friday morning when he was taken into custody.

    “While it’s the FBI’s standard practice not to discuss such operational specifics, we can say that the number of personnel and vehicles widely reported as being on scene Friday is an overstatement, and the tactics used by FBI personnel were professional, in line with standard practices, and intended to ensure the safety of everyone present in and outside the residence,” the statement read.

    buckscountycouriertimes.com


  26. by oldedude on September 30, 2022 6:12 pm
    To answer one question that I had.

    The lawmakers questioned why using force was necessary because all indications from Houck's attorney are that Houck was more than willing to cooperate with the investigation, but DOJ officials stopped communicating with them.

    The letter discusses the contents of an email sent by Houck's attorney to an assistant U.S. attorney, which insisted that "if the Department intended to indict Mr. Houck, he would receive the summons on Mr. Houck's behalf and that he would appear voluntarily."

    The attorney "made clear to the committee that he and Mr. Houck were cooperative with the Justice Department; however, in return the Justice Department failed to communicate with them," the letter declared.



    After the Philadelphia district attorney declined to prosecute Houck over the incident, Breen said the man involved brought a private criminal complaint against Houck. However, that man never showed up to his own court hearings that he initiated. Houck’s lawyer said they have considered taking legal action for abuse of process.


    A senior FBI source previously told Fox News there may have been 15-20 agents at the scene, but denied 25 were there. The agents who came to the door had guns out and at the ready, according to this FBI source, but the guns were never pointed at Houck or his family and were lowered or holstered as soon as Houck was taken into custody.

    Kaplan noted that the FBI may have deployed a large contingent of agents because of knowledge that Houck had access to a firearm or out of an abundance of caution.

    christianpost.com
    nypost.com
    foxnews.com


  27. by HatetheSwamp on October 1, 2022 3:28 am

    Curt,

    From the article I linked AT THE BEGINNING OF THIS THREAD:

    The FBI later denied the agents were part of a SWAT team and a former Houck family spokesperson said Ryan-Marie Houck unintentionally used a technical term. A senior FBI source previously told Fox News there may have been 15-20 agents at the scene, but denied 25 were there.

    Re: "Had this been a similar FBI arrest of a BLM member charged with assault and a federal crime, I doubt you'd be yelping about it."

    Now, that's the point, ain't!!!!!? There are no "similar accounts."

    That's the point. That's the fascist point.

    My question for you is: Knowing the long history of FBI abuse of our citizenry...which is well documented...how is it that you don't accept the possibility that Mrs Houck's account might be true?

    That's all pb's doing. It's what the 22 Congress members are doing. And, it's reasonable.


  28. by oldedude on October 1, 2022 5:46 am
    "I suspect that you and other conservatives have a case of White Privilege and victim mentality. Had this been a similar FBI arrest of a BLM member charged with assault and a federal crime, I doubt you'd be yelping about it."

    Yes, I would. Because not being woke means I don't interject race into my thought process. If it's wrong, it's wrong for everyone. Do I think he should have pushed the guy? It sounds like there's a difference in stories. The police on scene thought there was enough veracity on both sides not to charge either side with assault. That tells me something.

    Curt, if your son went to the scene and chose the same course, would I attack him? No. He was onscene. And you know the watch commander or Sgt was there to make sure they wanted to spend time on it.


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