Onerous Core Republican Caught Making an attempt to Deliver Gun Onto the Home Ground

Mark Aguirre is accused of running a man off the street and threatening him at gunpoint. The ex-cop was hired as a private investigator by a group whose CEO is GOP activist Steven Hotze (photo).

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HOUSTON – A former Houston police captain was arrested after allegedly running a man off the street and threatening him at gunpoint. Prosecutors said this was part of an elaborate attempt to find evidence of a false conspiracy theory of widespread electoral fraud in Harris County.

Mark Aguirre, who worked on behalf of a powerful Republican megadonor group to investigate unsubstantiated allegations of widespread election fraud in Harris County, was arrested Tuesday, according to Harris County prosecutors.

Prosecutors say Aguirre’s allegations were unfounded and that he received $ 266,400 from the Liberty Center for God and Country, whose CEO is prominent Texas right-wing activist Steven Hotze.

Hotze was among a group of Republicans who unsuccessfully sued that nearly 127,000 Harris County ballots were cast that year. Hotze was also among the Republicans who tried – and failed – to prevent Governor Greg Abbott from extending the early voting period during the coronavirus pandemic. Aguirre had made an affidavit stating that he was involved in an investigation into a “far-reaching” and fraudulent voting program “in Harris County.

Jared Woodfill, a spokesman and attorney for Hotze, confirmed that the Liberty Center had hired an Aguirre-run company to investigate election fraud. The company hired about 20 private investigators to process fraudulent ballots in Harris County and other locations in Texas during the 2020 election. Woodfill said he knew about Aguirre’s arrest but had not yet heard Aguirre’s side of the story.

“[Hotze] I didn’t lead or lead any of the investigations, ”Woodfill said, noting that Hotze was instead sending tips and information to the team so that investigators could decide how to follow up. “The [Liberty Center] kept the investigation team investigating the allegations. “

Aguirre told authorities that he believed the air conditioning technician he threatened on October 19, whom he had been monitoring for four days with the help of at least two other unidentified people, was the mastermind of the alleged election fraud program and that fake ballot papers were being transported the technician’s truck. He told police that he believed the technician had as many as 750,000 counterfeit ballot papers in his possession, according to an affidavit from the Houston police officer who responded to the incident.

“There were no ballots in the truck,” said a Harris County prosecutor’s release. “It was filled with parts and tools from the air conditioning system.”

Aguirre said he and other unidentified suspects had set up a “command post” at a Marriott hotel in Pearland for days prior to the incident. According to the Houston police report, he refused to identify the other people he had worked with.

Aguirre drove his SUV onto the back of the technician’s truck to get the man to stop and get out. This emerges from a court document describing the likely cause of the charge of aggravated assault with a lethal weapon. He pointed a pistol at the technician and, under oath, forced him to the ground.

“We’re lucky no one was killed,” Harris District Attorney Kim Ogg said in a statement. “His alleged investigation was backward from the start – first alleging a crime and then trying to prove it happened.”

Aguirre was arrested by Houston police on Tuesday and charged with grievous bodily harm with a lethal weapon, a second degree crime that can be punished with up to 20 years in prison.

Hotze is an active GOP donor and one of the most prolific culture warriors on the right. He is a fierce opponent of same-sex marriage and a key figure in the unsuccessful 2017 “bathroom bill” demand in Texan law. That summer, he left a voicemail for Abbott’s chief of staff asking him to shoot and kill people protesting the death of George Floyd in custody.

This article was originally published by The Texas Tribune.
Image by Steven Hotze via Facebook

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