A grocery store employee who smacked former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was arrested and charged with assault, police announced Monday. Giuliani was in Staten Island campaigning for his son, Andrew, a Republican candidate for New York governor.
According to the Wall Street Journal:
New York resident Daniel Gill, 39 years old, was charged with the assault, police said. A woman who answered a phone call at a number associated with Mr. Gill declined to comment.
Mr. Gill was arraigned in a Staten Island criminal court Monday. His charges were downgraded to third-degree assault from second-degree assault. He was also charged with menacing in the third-degree and second-degree harassment. A judge released him from jail.
“Our client merely patted Mr. Giuliani, who sustained nothing remotely resembling physical injuries, without malice to simply get his attention,” The Legal Aid Society said in a statement, adding that Mr. Gill has no criminal history.
Mr. Giuliani said after the suspect slapped him, the man began cursing and shouting at him, pressing him on his views, including abortion.
A New York City Police Department spokesperson said that the suspect cursed at Mr. Giuliani while slapping him. The former New York mayor refused medical attention at the scene, the spokesperson said. Mr. Giuliani said the suspect was charged without him filing a formal complaint.
“Store security observed the incident, reacted swiftly and the police were notified,” a ShopRite spokeswoman said. “The employee is suspended pending termination.”