President Donald Trump shared a bizarre conspiracy theory early Tuesday morning relating to the incident involving Buffalo Police Officers and 75-year-old Martin Gugino. Two officers were captured on video shoving the 75-year-old to the ground where he began to bleed from his head and ear.
The incident led to the two Buffalo Police Officers, Aaron Torgalski, 39, and Robert McCabe, 32, being charged with felony assault after the incident on Thursday night, June 4, during protests outside of City Hall. Both Torgalski and McCabe were immediately suspended without pay.
Despite the charges, Trump has alternate theories about what really went on during the incident.
According to Trump, Gugino may have been an “ANTIFA provocateur” who was there to “set up” police officers and blackout their equipment with a scanner.
“Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “75-year-old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment. @OANN I watched, he fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner. Could be a set up?”
Gugino remains in serious but stable condition at Erie County Medical Center.
Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur. 75 year old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment. @OANN I watched, he fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner. Could be a set up?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 9, 2020
Gugino had been part of a group protesting the death of George Floyd and police brutality past the 8:00 p.m. curfew.
His attorney, Kelly V. Zarcone, Esq., responded to the comments by Trump with a brief statement to Ed Drantch of WKBW.
“There is no need to go around name calling, accusing people of being things they’re not. Everything will work itself out,” she said. “Martin has always been a peaceful protester, I don’t know where that comes from.”
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown also issued a statement on the president’s tweet.
“The City of Buffalo is focused on healing after several days and nights of calm and constructive meetings and protests about how we take action to achieve racial equity and a good future for our residents and community. We will not be distracted from this urgent work,” the statement read. “Our focus on positive change is stronger than ever. My administration remains hopeful that Mr. Gugino will experience a full recovery. And that the officers involved in this incident receive due process under law.”
The comments from Trump came during a 40-tweet storm early Tuesday, June 9, as he continues to sound off on negative poll numbers, his critics, and those who are calling to defund the police.