Rand Paul Supporter Who Stepped On Activist's Head Wants Apology; Victim Says Incident was Premeditated

MoveOn.org's Laura Valle CBS

Updated: 12:43pm EST.

Tim Profitt, the former Rand Paul volunteer who stepped on the head of a MoveOn.org-affiliated activist outside of a debate on Monday, said he thinks the woman, Lauren Valle, owes him an apology.

"I don't think it's that big of a deal," Profitt said of the incident in an interview with CBS affiliate WKYT. "I would like for her to apologize to me to be honest with you."

Profitt, a Rand Paul supporter who used to serve as a campaign coordinator for the Kentucky Senate hopeful's campaign, was caught on video on Monday stepping on Valle's head after she had been wrestled to the ground. Valle had been trying to offer a satiric award to the candidate.

Profitt later said he was sorry "that it came to that," but he argued to WKYT that Valle was not an innocent bystander.

CBS News Complete Coverage: Election 2010
Kentucky Senate: Paul (R) vs. Conway (D)

"She's a professional at what she does," Profitt said. "I think when all the facts come out, I think people will see that she was the one that initiated the whole thing."

Profitt also said that chronic back pain contributed to his actions: "I put my foot on her, and I did push her down at the very end, and I told her to stay down. I actually put my foot on her to -- I couldn't bend over because I have issues with my back," Profitt said.

On CBS' "The Early Show" Wednesday morning, Valle - who suffered a concussion as a result of the incident - suggested that the attack was "premeditated." She said her companion had overheard Paul supporters saying, "We're here to do crowd control and we might have to take someone out."

"What happened was when they realized that I was there, they actually formed a circle behind me and then as the car pulled up - before Rand was even out of the car - ... they stepped in front of me," Valle said. "So I stepped off the curb and around them. And then they actually pursued me around the car. This was premeditated."

Valle, who was dressed as a mock "RepublicCorp" employee at the event, said she had moved to the front of the crowd so that she could display her sign to the candidates.

"I believe strongly in non-violence. I believe in peaceful protests. I believe in my right to carry a sign. I am a 23-year-old woman with only the intention to hold a sign," Valle said on the Early Show. "So, I had no -- no bad intentions, only wanted to be there like everyone else with a sign."

Profitt, who the Paul campaign cut ties with as a result of the incident, has been served with criminal summons by Kentucky's Lexington police department.

Update: John Collins, a spokesman for Jack Conway's campaign, says that the incident involving Profitt was not the only display of violence at the debate, and decried what he called the "thuggish mentality" pervading the scene. He also called for the Paul campaign to return the thousands of dollars worth of contributions he says Profitt and his wife donated.

The Conway campaign also argued that the Paul should turn over information related to the identities of the other people associated with the Valle incident so that they could be held accountable.

"Who are the other two guys who tackled the young woman?" Collins asked.


Lucy Madison
Lucy Madison is a political reporter for CBSNews.com. You can read more of her posts here. Follow Hotsheet on Facebook and Twitter.

Comments

CBSN Live

pop-out
Live Video

Watch CBSN Live

Watch CBS News anytime, anywhere with the new 24/7 digital news network. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone.