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Wednesday, July 15, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Idaho AG investigates claim that Rep. Heather Scott backers harassed Idaho Democrat volunteer

Idaho State Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, in May 2016. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Idaho State Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, in May 2016. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

The Idaho attorney general’s office has opened an investigation into charges that supporters of Idaho state Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, stalked and harassed a young field organizer for the Idaho Democratic Party in North Idaho.

The Bonner County prosecutor’s office referred the charges to the attorney general’s office. “At this point, we’re reviewing it,” Deputy Attorney General Brian Kane said Wednesday.

The 21-year-old field organizer called the Bonner County Sheriff’s Office after people in a pickup truck 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 the young organizer that “being a Democrat is not a protected class.”

The young man said he 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 over 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 elderly woman had on her car.

She chose not to file a police report.

But reports were filed with the Sandpoint Police Department and the Sheriff’s Office over the incidents involving the party organizer.

Scott has declined to comment on the issue.

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