Minnesota Rep. Angie Craig was assaulted in an elevator in her D.C. apartment building on Thursday, her chief of staff said in a statement.
Craig, a 50-year-old Democrat in her third term, called 911 and her assailant fled the scene, Chief of Staff Nick Coe said. The incident happened around 7:15 a.m. Craig defended herself and suffered some bruising but “is otherwise physically okay,” according to the statement.
“There is no evidence that the incident was politically motivated,” Coe said. “Rep. Craig is grateful to the DC Metropolitan Police Department for their quick response and asks for privacy at this time.”
Craig won reelection in November in one of the most expensive races of the 2022 cycle.
Before the announcement from her office, Craig was overheard in the Speaker’s Lobby off the House floor telling someone it was “not a good day,” although she didn’t elaborate.
Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries said in a statement that House Democrats were “horrified by the violent attack on Rep. Angie Craig in her own apartment building early this morning” and “appalled that this terrifying assault took place.”
“I have asked the House Sergeant at Arms and the United States Capitol Police to work with Angie, Cheryl and their sons to ensure that Angie and her family are safe while in our nation’s capital and at home in Minnesota,” Jeffries said. “We will be there for Angie in any way that she needs in the aftermath of this very difficult situation.”
The U.S. Capitol Police said there was “no indication” that Craig was targeted because of her elected position but that the case is under investigation by USCP and the Metropolitan Police Department.
“This morning a man, who is believed to be homeless, hit the Congresswoman and grabbed her neck while she was in the elevator of her Washington, D.C. apartment complex. The Congresswoman received a minor injury to her chin. DC’s Metropolitan Police Department was called and responded,” the Capitol Police statement said.
Overall crime in Washington declined 4 percent last year compared to 2021, and violent crime dropped 7 percent, according to the Metropolitan Police Department. Some categories of crime increased, however, with robberies up 2 percent and motor vehicle thefts up 8 percent.
Other members of Congress have been victims of crimes, both politically motivated and not. Pennsylvania Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon, a Democrat, was the victim of a carjacking in Philadelphia in December 2021. Former GOP Rep. Lee Zeldin was attacked last year during a campaign event when he was running for governor of New York.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul was assaulted by a neighbor in 2017 and suffered six broken ribs and an injured lung. The man, Rene Boucher, pleaded guilty to felony assault and said the dispute was over lawn care.
Members have also been victims of street crime in the capital. New York Rep. Grace Meng was attacked and robbed around Capitol Hill in 2013. A man was arrested after stealing former New Jersey Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen’s wallet in 2007 and the congressman chased him in Georgetown. Former Rep. Bob Traxler of Michigan was struck on the head and robbed of $8 outside of a Capitol Hill hotel in 1992, while Mississippi Sen. John Stennis was shot during a mugging in 1973.
Other shooting victims include former Rep. Gabby Giffords — the wife of current Sen. Mark Kelly — who was critically injured in an assassination attempt in Arizona in 2011. Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., was also critically wounded when a politically motivated gunman opened fire as the Republican team practiced in Alexandria, Va., for the 2017 Congressional Baseball Game.
Lindsey McPherson contributed to this report.