Thursday, September 20, 2018
Politics

Sen. Tim Kaine's son among several arrested after protesters disrupt Trump rally in Minnesota (w/video)

The youngest son of Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., was among six people arrested over the weekend during a rally for President Donald Trump in Minnesota that turned chaotic when counterprotesters set off fireworks, lit a smoke bomb and sprayed a chemical irritant into the crowd.

Linwood Michael Kaine, 24, was arrested Saturday on suspicion of second-degree riot, a felony, during the "March 4 Trump" rally at the State Capitol in St. Paul, the Pioneer Press reported Tuesday. Kaine ran from the scene and was arrested about a block away after he resisted arrest, was sprayed with a chemical irritant and was taken to the ground, according to police.

The Ramsey County Attorney's Office declined to file criminal charges, finding insufficient evidence to substantiate the charge, spokesman Dennis Gerhardstein said Wednesday. The St. Paul City Attorney's Office was reviewing the case.

Four other people at the rally were arrested on suspicion of second-degree riot, and another was brought in for disorderly conduct. They, too, were released without charges.

Tim Kaine, a St. Paul native and Hillary Clinton's running mate in the 2016 election, and his wife, Anne Holton, did not comment on the specifics of their son's arrest, but gave a brief emailed statement to the Washington Post through a spokeswoman.

"We love that our three children have their own views and concerns about current political issues," they said. "They fully understand the responsibility to express those concerns peacefully."

Kaine and Holton's oldest son, Nat, is a U.S. Marine who has deployed overseas. Their daughter, Annella, is a college student.

Linwood Kaine, who goes by the nickname Woody, attended a small liberal arts college about 45 minutes south of St. Paul and is currently a resident of Minneapolis.

Police said he was among roughly 50 counterprotesters who clashed with pro-Trump demonstrators Saturday afternoon at the Minnesota State Capitol, where a crowd of about 400 had gathered in the rotunda to listen to speeches in support of the new president.

Tensions were already running high when someone threw a smoke bomb into the audience, striking a woman in the head, local media reported. Others set off fireworks in the building, sending people running and prompting security guards to intervene. At one point, someone reportedly sprayed what police called a "chemical irritant" into the crowd, causing people to cough and scatter out of the room.

A police spokesman, Steve Linders, told the Pioneer Press that Kaine ran from the scene and was arrested down the street from the building, along with four others suspected to have lit fireworks. Kaine resisted the arresting officer, who had to use "some force" to take him into custody, Linders said.

"He turned around and squared up to fight with the officer," Linders said. "The officer was able to place Mr. Kaine under arrest and take him to the Ramsey County jail for booking."

Police told the Pioneer Press they did not know until Tuesday that they had arrested a U.S. senator's son. No one from the senator's office contacted the department about it, they said.

The rally at the State Capitol was one of several demonstrations held around the country over the weekend in support of Trump.

A rally in Berkeley, Calif., turned violent Saturday when pro- and anti-Trump demonstrators attacked each other with wooden sticks, Reuters reported. Some Trump supporters fired pepper spray, and at least three people were injured, including one man who had his teeth knocked out, according to Reuters. Video from the event showed people tackling each other and throwing punches in the park where the rally was held. At least five people were arrested.

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