POLITICAL PUNCHES

W. Virginia State Senate Candidate Beaten, Bloodied

A state Senate Democratic candidate and veteran in West Virginia was beaten unconscious and nearly run over at a campaign cookout on Sunday. Richard Ojeda’s suspected assailant, Jonathan Stuart Porter, was charged with malicious assault, malicious attempted assault, and felony destruction of property. Ojeda told NBC News reporters he didn’t remember much of the attack. “When I woke up, my head was on a tree stump covered in blood. Everyone was looking at me,” he said, adding that he had eight bone fractures, in addition to other injuries. Porter also allegedly tried to run him over with a pickup truck before others intervened. Porter allegedly hid in the mountains for six hours before eventually surrendering to authorities. The cause of the alleged attack was unclear, officials said, but Ojeda believed it was his desire for “increased transparency and good government,” he said. “The moment you start asking questions, you become public enemy No. 1. I’m challenging the powers that be.”