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Updated at 3:30 p.m. ET
Brad Parscale, senior digital adviser for the Trump campaign and former campaign manager, was involuntarily hospitalized after his wife told police in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on Sunday afternoon that Parscale had access to weapons and was threatening to harm himself.
Parscale was taken to a hospital under Florida’s Baker Act, which is designed to give emergency help to people who are undergoing a mental health crisis.
The police “went to the house in the Seven Isles community, an affluent area in which houses have access to the water,” NPR member station WLRN reported. “They made contact, ‘developed a rapport’ and negotiated his exit from the house, the police said in a statement.”
“We went out and it was very short. We went and got him help,” Fort Lauderdale Police Chief Karen Dietrich said, according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
A police report described the call as one for an attempted suicide. The report, released Monday morning, said police were called by a woman who said Parscale may have shot himself, because he had been heard “ranting and raving about something” before a gunshot was fired.
That initial call to police seems to have come from a real estate agent, who said a woman came up to her and said her husband may have shot himself. At the time, the caller was one house over from Parscale’s residence. The caller told police that she couldn’t confirm Parscale’s condition, because they were scared to go inside the house.
Candice Parscale told police that she ran out of the house after becoming alarmed by his behavior, as local TV station WPLG reported.
As police tried to figure out the circumstances inside the house, they learned of multiple weapons there, including pistols and rifles.
Parscale began to barricade himself inside and repeatedly hung up on attempts to talk to him, the police report said. But he later spoke to negotiators. And at one point, the report said, he drank a beer on his driveway. More than three hours passed from the time officers arrived around 3:43 p.m. to when the encounter was deemed to have concluded, just before 7 p.m., according to the report.
In body camera footage released Monday by the police department, an officer asks Parscale over the phone to walk outside with no weapons.
The video shows Parscale walking down the driveway shirtless. Parscale starts to talk to the officer wearing a body camera when another officer runs over and yells at him to get on the ground. Seconds later, that officer tackles him. “I didn’t do anything,” Parscale protests as several officers roll him over and handcuff him behind his back.
According to the police report, Parscale’s wife had bruises on both her arms. She said she sustained the injuries “a few days ago, during a physical altercation with Bradley, which she did not report,” the document said.
Parscale was the campaign manager of President Trump’s reelection effort for more than two years. He was demoted from that post in July. Since then, he has been a senior adviser focusing on digital and data strategies.
“Brad Parscale is a member of our family and we all love him,” the Trump campaign said in a statement sent to NPR’s Tamara Keith. “We are ready to support him and his family in any way possible.”
If you or someone you know is in crisis, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, or go here to chat online.
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