Public Safety

Colorado man pleads guilty to throwing water on U.S. Rep. Steve King

Republican U.S. Rep. Steve King holds a Town Hall at the Grundy Center Community Center in Grundy Center, Iowa, U.S., August 17, 2019. REUTERS/Brenna Norman
Republican U.S. Rep. Steve King holds a Town Hall at the Grundy Center Community Center in Grundy Center, Iowa, U.S., August 17, 2019. REUTERS/Brenna Norman

A Colorado man pleaded guilty Monday to assaulting U.S. Rep. Steve King by throwing a cup of water on him in a Fort Dodge restaurant.

Blake Gibbins, 27, of Lafayette, Colo., and a native of Iowa, pleaded guilty to one count of assaulting a member of Congress.

During the plea hearing, Gibbins admitted he approached a table March 22, at the Mineral City Mill and Grill, where King and others were seated, and assaulted King by intentionally throwing a cup of water on him.

Court documents show witnesses told police Gibbins asked King if he was Steve King and then threw the cup of water on him. Gibbins also splashed another person sitting at the table, a Webster County District Court criminal complaint shows.

Gibbins was quickly restrained by a customer, according to the complaint. When officers arrived, Gibbins was sitting on a bench in the lobby.

According to CQ-Roll Call, Gibbins was charged with simple assault and disorderly conduct, both simple misdemeanors. He pleaded not guilty.

But his Webster County District Court trial, scheduled for April was postponed after the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Iowa began probing the incident to see if Gibbins had assaulted King because he was a congressman, the Des Moines Register reported.

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Sentencing will be set after a presentencing report is completed. Gibbons faces up to one year in prison, a $100,000 fine, and up to five years of supervised release, following any prison term.

Gibbins was released pending sentencing.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Duax and was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Fort Dodge Police Department and the U.S. Capitol Police.

Comments: (319) 398-8318; trish.mehaffey@thegazette.com

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