Former Houston police captain charged with pointing gun at air-conditioner repairman, believing he was a voter fraud ‘mastermind’

Mark Anthony Aguirre, 63, was paid greater than a quarter-million {dollars} by a Houston-based personal residents group investigating unsubstantiated 2020 election fraud claims, prosecutors mentioned.

On October 16, Aguirre requested a lieutenant with the Texas Attorney General’s Office to conduct a site visitors cease to assist with his investigation, in line with a Houston Police affidavit obtained by CNN. When the thought was rejected, Aguirre mentioned he would do it himself and “make a citizen’s arrest,” the affidavit says.

Three days later, Aguirre allegedly ran his SUV into the again of a man’s truck, and when the person bought out, Aguirre pointed a gun at him, pressured him to the bottom and put his knee on the person’s again — a picture captured by police body-camera when officers arrived, in line with prosecutors.

Aguirre advised authorities he had performed surveillance on the person driving the truck for 4 days, in line with the district lawyer’s news release. He mentioned he suspected there have been 750,000 fraudulent ballots contained in the truck and that the person was “the mastermind of a giant (voter) fraud,” the discharge states.

In reality, the sufferer was an “innocent and ordinary” air-conditioner repairman, prosecutors mentioned. Responding authorities discovered no ballots contained in the automobile, solely air conditioner elements and instruments, prosecutors mentioned.

After an investigation, Houston police mentioned they discovered the allegations of election fraud “unfounded” and referred the case to the district lawyer’s workplace.

Aguirre was arrested Tuesday and is charged with aggravated assault with a lethal weapon, a second-degree felony punishable by as much as 20 years in jail, prosecutors mentioned. He posted $30,000 bond on Tuesday afternoon and is out of jail, in line with Harris County courtroom information.

‘He crossed the road’

The incident is among the most critical penalties of the conspiracy theories round systemic voter fraud, which have been repeatedly debunked. President Donald Trump has continued to say that widespread voter fraud occurred through the election, however election officers have rejected the declare and his workforce of attorneys have produced no proof in courtroom to assist it.
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“He crossed the line from dirty politics to commission of a violent crime and we are lucky no one was killed,” Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg mentioned in a assertion. “His alleged investigation was backward from the start — first alleging a crime had occurred and then trying to prove it happened.”

Aguirre’s lawyer Terry Yates advised CNN affiliate KTRK that he believed the arrest is “political persecution.”

“He was working and investigating voter fraud, there was an accident,” Yates mentioned. “A member of the car got out and rushed toward him and that’s where the confrontation took place. It’s very different than what you’re citing in the affidavit.”

Prosecutors say Aguirre was paid greater than $260,000 by a personal group known as “Liberty Center for God and Country” to research alleged poll schemes within the Houston space. He obtained about $211,400 the day following the incident.

Jared Woodfill, the middle’s president, advised CNN the group and Republican activist Steve Hotze employed a personal agency that included “Aguirre, a former FBI investigator and about 20 investigators that investigated reports of voter fraud,” experiences that have been despatched to Hotze.
The Republican activist was also one of the plaintiffs who filed a petition previous to Election Day in search of to invalidate 127,000 ballots forged in drive-thru early voting. A federal decide rejected that request.

CNN has reached out to Hotze for remark.

Affidavit particulars the baseless idea

According to the Houston Police affidavit, Aguirre advised police at the scene he was “investigating a voter fraud ballot harvesting conspiracy” that he claimed the sufferer, recognized as DL, was working out of his house. He mentioned that DL had roughly 750,000 fraudulent mail ballots and accused DL of “using Hispanic children to sign the ballots” as a result of their fingerprints would not be in any databases.

CNN has reached out to DL however has not been capable of communicate with him.

According to DL’s assertion to police, whereas he was on the bottom being held by Aguirre, two different automobiles pulled up and Aguirre instructed a type of drivers to go looking DL’s truck. After telling Aguirre that the truck was clear, DL’s truck was pushed away from the scene. Police discovered his truck deserted a brief time later a few blocks away, the affidavit states.

Aguirre advised the police at the scene that he had been surveilling DL’s house for 4 days. Police searched DL’s house with his permission, the affidavit states, and didn’t discover any proof of voter fraud or poll harvesting.

Aguirre additionally advised the officers at the scene that they “can be a hero or part of the problem,” the affidavit states.

“I just hope you are a patriot,” Aguirre advised police in accordance the affidavit.

Court information present that Aguirre’s preliminary listening to is scheduled for Thursday morning in Harris County, Texas.

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