Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) was assaulted while mowing the lawn at his home in Bowling Green, Kentucky, on Friday, sustaining minor injuries including cuts near his mouth and a "possible rib injury" that caused difficult breathing. News of the arrest of suspect Rene Boucher, who has been charged with one count of fourth-degree assault, was reported Saturday.
Local sources say Boucher is Paul's neighbor and an outspoken critic of the senator's fellow Republican, President Trump, on social media. It is unclear whether the attack's motivation was political or related to a neighborly dispute, but an unnamed Paul aide reportedly said the senator's office believes politics are not involved. Neighbors report the two men, both doctors, have an "ongoing dispute."
Paul was "blindsided" by the attack, said his Kentucky communications director, and a criminal complaint cited by an area NBC affiliate indicates Paul "told police that his neighbor came onto his property and tackled him from behind, forcing him to the ground and causing pain." Paul did not notice Boucher approaching because he was wearing ear plugs.