Support Rally Held for Air Force Veteran who was Assaulted While Holding Trump Sign

FALL RIVER — Dozens of supporters of 82-year-old Charlie Chase came out Saturday afternoon at the rotary off North Main Street, the site where the military veteran was allegedly attacked by a 27-year-old man on Wednesday as he held a President Donald Trump campaign sign.

A majority of the large crowd held Trump signs and many that indicated their protest of an assault on an elderly man.

Patricia Saint Aubin, a delegate for Trump, said she’d met Chase 10 years ago through his activity with the Massachusetts Republican party.

“He’s just the sweetest, kindest man and for him to stand out here and stand up for President Trump with a sign, and to be attacked maliciously when he’s out here by himself or [with] one or two friends just galled me,” said Saint Aubin. “The audacity to hit a veteran, an Air Force veteran, a career veteran that spend his life fighting for us so that we can stand out here and do these kind of things, to maliciously come along and hurt my good friend.”

Saint Aubin said Chase is out doing what he believes is his civic duty to support the President and said he has expressed how overwhelmed he is with the support he’s received since the alleged attack.

Assonet resident Steve Thomas, holding an American flag, said he came to the rally to “100 percent support Charlie.”

“I’ve seen Charlie many times over the last six to nine months either standing with an American flag or a Trump sign gently waving to people as the drive by, honking their horns and he always has smile on his face and I’m here to support him,” Thomas said.

Dr. David Steinhof, a local dentist and former Republican state representative candidate, said that when he heard about the attack on Chase, he called friends who committed to showing to the support rally.

“We’re here for Charlie Chase who needs to know we will be with him and nobody should fear holding a sign for whom ever it is. Nobody should be in fear to be beaten up simply for holding a sign. God bless you, Charlie,” said Steinhof.

Steve Miller, of New Bedford, held a sign reading “Disgraceful to Attack Seniors!” said he too at the rally to support Charlie Chase.

“I was outraged to hear what happened to him, it’s just not right. I’m a Trump supporter as well and it’s just nice to be here supporting Charlie,” said Miller.

Aidan Courtright, 27, of Fall River, is facing charges of committing a civil rights violation with injury; assault and battery on a person over 60 years old; vandalizing property; and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon on a person over 60 years old.

He’s accused of stopping his vehicle as Chase held a Trump sign on the rotary, pushing to ground an assaulting him, then tearing the campaign sign.

A plea of not guilty was entered on his behalf during an arraignment on Wednesday in District Court and he was held until a dangerousness hearing where a judge denied the Bristol County District Attorney’s request to hold him without bail.

Courtright, who has no previous criminal record, was released with conditions that he not have contact with Chase or witnesses to the alleged attack. He was also ordered not to participate in any online political activity.

Chase was identified in a TV interview.

The story caught the attention of Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., who contacted Chase via the Howie Carr Show on WRKO-AM and offered his support and thanks.

The rally was , a conservative talk show host “and MAGA activist” whose radio show is broadcast out of Nashua, New Hampshire. 

This article is written by Jo C. Goode from The Herald News, Fall River, Mass. and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to

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