ANTIOCH, Calif. (KRON) — Antioch Mayor Lamar Thorpe was punched while leaving an event on Tuesday, the City of Antioch confirmed to KRON4. Thorpe was described as “shaken up” but not seriously injured.
Antioch City Spokesperson Rolando Bonilla said Thorpe was leaving a Chamber of Commerce event when a man confronted him and punched him in the chest. Councilmember Tamisha Torres-Walker broke up the altercation, Bonilla said.
The man who punched Thorpe fled the scene. Witnesses identified the man and described him to police. Bonilla said an arrest “appears to be imminent.”
The event where the incident occurred was the Antioch Chamber of Commerce’s 2022 State of Business Luncheon, KRON4 confirmed. It was held at the Lone Tree Golf Course & Event Center, 4800 Golf Course Road in Antioch.
Police have spoken with Thorpe and are working on a police report, per the city.
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Thorpe has faced several controversies while serving as mayor. On March 19, Thorpe was arrested for driving under the influence on I-680. He has also faced claims of sexual harassment, leading to an out-of-court settlement reached by Contra Costa County.
Thorpe released the following statement regarding the incident.
“I can confirm that the reports of my being punched at an event today are true.
After giving a speech at a luncheon hosted by the Antioch Chamber of Commerce, I was aggressively approached by an older white male in his late 50’s. When it became clear that he was seeking a confrontation, I asked him to leave. As I attempted to walk away, the man punched me in the chest and was attempting to punch me a second time, but was not able to land his blow, as bystanders intervened to help me. Although shaken up, I am doing well. Violence has absolutely no place in the public discourse and will never be tolerated. My hope is that this individual is arrested and prosecuted. I would like to thank the bystanders who intervened for putting their own safety at risk to help me. I will never forget their kindness and support. I will be at tonight’s regularly scheduled meeting of the Antioch City Council”