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Local Democratic Party leaders picking up the pieces after HQ shooting

Lafayette police believe the shooting took place sometime late Wednesday night or early Thursday morning.

Posted: Jan 8, 2021 2:55 PM
Updated: Jan 8, 2021 6:24 PM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Tippecanoe County Democratic Party leaders say it's no coincidence the headquarters at 826 Main Street in downtown Lafayette were targeted by gunshots just hours after supporters of Republican President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., earlier Wednesday.

Lafayette police believe the shooting took place sometime late Wednesday night or early Thursday morning. As News 18 previously reported, at least six bullets fractured the glass window of the front door and grazed the drywall inside the headquarters. No one was inside and no one was injured during the shooting.

Tippecanoe County Democratic Party Chair Heather Maddox says volunteers are coming together to fix the damage at the headquarters. For now, the building's front door is boarded up with plywood.

"I spoke to our landlord and we've had offers of people who said they'll donate to help fix the glass and fix the damage which I think we're going to end up taking them up on," she says. 

Maddox says she's also considering enhanced security measures in the building, but she's not sure what those measures will look like and will consult experts to see what they recommend.

She added she's wary to step foot inside the building but says the headquarters will remain open as she continues to pick up the pieces.

Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski is sending a strong message to the shooter: The attempt at intimidation is not going to work.

Roswarski, one of the county's highest ranking Democrats, says he'll do what's necessary to secure city hall, which is located just a few blocks from the headquarters. And the former police officer says he's not intimidated by whatever message the shooter was trying to send.

He characterized the attack as a drive-by shooting that could have been perpetrated by someone from outside the community.

"If that's some kind of message somebody's trying to send to deter me from doing my job or the way that I will make decisions, they've severely underestimated my resolve," he says. 

Roswarski says he's disappointed the nation has turned to violence to solve problems, similar to the assault on Washington, D.C., earlier this week. He emphasized people who destroy property shouldn't be tolerated and should be prosecuted.

A nearby business owner says she provided surveillance footage from her own camera to Lafayette Police Department.

News 18 submitted a records request for any surveillance footage of the shooting, but police so far haven't been able to find a recording of the incident.

Members of the West Lafayette City Council provided the following statement about the shooting to News 18:

"We are appalled that the Tippecanoe County Democratic Headquarters was subjected to a gunfire assault on January 7. The responsibility lies with those who foster the climate of intolerance that has resulted from the incendiary rhetoric of the President and his enablers."

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