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Rep. Gonzalez Charged for Punching Man

May 05, 1987|United Press International

SAN ANTONIO — Rep. Henry B. Gonzalez (D-Tex.), was charged with misdemeanor assault Monday for punching a constituent who called him a communist last December.

Bexar County Dist. Atty. Fred Rodriguez said he had delayed filing the charge, hoping for a settlement in the case.

But Gonzalez, who called Rodriguez a "craven coward" for his handling of the case, refused to apologize publicly as the constituent requested, Rodriguez said.

"He walks up to a man sitting down and punches him in the face and calls me a coward? Wow," Rodriguez said.

Gonzalez has admitted hitting Bill Allen, 40, of San Antonio, at a restaurant Dec. 4. Gonzalez said he overheard the man at another table call him a communist, approached him, asked him to repeat it and then hit him.

Allen, who police said suffered "a shiner," filed a complaint.

Rodriguez said a court would decide whether to seek an arrest warrant for Gonzalez, who was en route to Washington after his birthday party in San Antonio Sunday and could not be reached for comment.

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