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Saturday, August 17, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Eye On Boise

Attorney General opens investigation into charges of harassment of Dem worker by Heather Scott supporters

Idaho State Rep. Heather Scott talked about local politics May 4 in Priest River before the candidates forum at the community junior high school. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Idaho State Rep. Heather Scott talked about local politics May 4 in Priest River before the candidates forum at the community junior high school. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

The Bonner County prosecutor’s office has referred charges that supporters of Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, stalked and harassed a young field organizer for the Idaho Democratic Party in North Idaho to the Idaho Attorney General’s office, and the Attorney General’s office has opened an investigation.

“At this point, we’re reviewing it,” Deputy Attorney General Brian Kane said this afternoon. “We’re starting our review.”

The 21-year-old field organizer called the Bonner County Sheriff’s office after people in a loud pickup showed up around 2 a.m. at a remote rural home where he was staying with a local family and photographed the house and his car license plate. The sheriff’s deputy who responded dismissed his concerns and told him that “being a Democrat is not a protected class.” The young man had previously been accosted and harassed by Scott supporters at a Sandpoint Safeway store, and had emerged from his Sandpoint office to find several of them, wearing Heather Scott baseball caps, leaning against his car.

In one of the Safeway incidents, the organizer said the Scott supporter told him, “You’d better watch your back, because we’re watching you.”

The state Democratic Party pulled the organizer out of Bonner and Boundary counties out of concern for his safety. That followed an August incident in which Scott’s Democratic challenger, Kate McAlister, said her 90-year-old mother-in-law was accosted by an armed Scott supporter outside the Sandpoint Safeway store as she was putting away her groceries; the man, with a gun on his hip, complained about the “Kate” sticker the woman had on her car. She chose not to file a police report about that incident, but reports were filed with both the Sandpoint Police and the Bonner County Sheriff’s office over the incidents involving the party organizer.

Scott has thus far declined to comment.




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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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