Democrats donate to suspect accused of vandalizing Sen. Hoeven’s office

Kylie Oversen, Ellie Shockley, Ellen Chaffee
Kylie Oversen, Ellie Shockley, Ellen Chaffee(KFYR)
Published: Jan. 8, 2021 at 7:15 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Three North Dakota Democrats are being criticized for contributing money to the man who is charged with destroying Sen. John Hoeven’s, R-N.D., office entrance in Fargo.

Security camera footage shows a man walking up the stairs to the entrance of Sen. Hoeven’s office and using an ax to smash an intercom system and the front windows.

A Go-Fund-Me page raising money for legal defense expenses for the man accused of vandalizing, Thomas Stark of Lisbon, North Dakota, features donations from three state Democrats.

Democratic-NPL Party Chairwoman Kylie Oversen, Party Executive Committee Representative Ellie Shockley, and the party’s nominee for lieutenant governor in 2012 Ellen Chaffee all gave donations.

The Stark family’s fundraising page said they need $15,000 for a quality defender in this case, and by late afternoon on Jan. 8, they’ve raised nearly $8,000.

Party Chairwoman Oversen responded to the monetary donation she made to the suspect accused of vandalizing the North Dakota Senator’s office by saying:

“I firmly believe that everyone, no matter their socioeconomic status, deserves a full and rigorous defense when accused of a crime. The small donation I made won’t even pay for an hour of time with a private defense attorney. I plainly and resolutely condemn violence, including against elected officials and public property. My donation does not reflect my views on the incident.”

But North Dakota Republican Party Chairmen Rick Berg disagrees saying:

“Video evidence leaves little in doubt about this attack, so it is unfathomable why ND Dem-NPL officials would lend their name and financial support to a man they refer to as ‘innocent.’”

Thomas Starks is set for a preliminary hearing on Jan. 21 regarding the vandalization of Sen. Hoeven’s office.

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