WASHINGTON (AP) — A man pleaded guilty Thursday to assaulting Democratic Rep. Angie Craig of Minnesota in the elevator of her Washington apartment building in February, according to court records.
Kendrid Khalil Hamlin, 26, pleaded guilty to charges of assaulting a member of Congress and assaulting law enforcement officers, according to the court docket. Hamlin was also accused of assaulting two officers as they attempted to arrest him on the same day of Craig’s attack.
Hamlin’s attorneys said in an emailed statement that he “accepted responsibility for his actions today with the earnest hope of moving towards rehabilitation and the mental health treatment he very much wants and needs.”
“Unfortunately, we know that treatment and rehabilitation will not occur in prison. We are hopeful that all parties can work together to finally provide Mr. Hamlin with the opportunity to get mental health support and treatment, as well as stable housing upon his release,” said his federal public defenders, Katie D’Adamo Guevara and Eugene Jeen-Young Kim Ohm.
A Craig spokesperson said her office had no immediate comment.
Craig was getting coffee in the lobby of her building when she noticed a man pacing, a U.S. Capitol Police special agent wrote in court papers. The man came into the elevator with her and said he needed to go to the bathroom and was coming into her apartment, the agent wrote.
After she said he couldn’t, he punched her in the side of her face and grabbed near her neck before she escaped by throwing her cup of hot coffee over her shoulder at him, according to the court papers.
Craig’s chief of staff said after the assault that there was no evidence it was politically motivated.
Prosecutors said in court papers that Hamlin had numerous previous convictions, including for assaulting a police officer.
Craig won a third term in November in the suburban-to-rural 2nd District south of Minneapolis and St. Paul in one of the most expensive House races in the country, frustrating the GOP’s best hope of flipping a Minnesota seat in an election that gave Republicans a narrow House majority.