Former Houston police captain accused of violent attempt to prove election conspiracy was hired by GOP activist's groupMark Aguirre is accused of running a man off the road and threatening him at gunpoint. The ex-cop was hired as a private investigator by a group whose CEO is GOP activist Steven Hotze.
HOUSTON — A former Houston police captain was arrested after allegedly running a man off the road and threatening him at gunpoint — what prosecutors say was part of an elaborate attempt to find evidence for a false conspiracy theory of widespread voter fraud in Harris County.
Mark Aguirre was working on behalf of a powerful Republican megadonor’s group to investigate unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud when, in October, he allegedly pulled a gun on a man described by the Harris County district attorney’s office as an “innocent and ordinary” air conditioner repairman.
Aguirre was arrested Tuesday, according to the Harris County district attorney’s office.
Prosecutors say Aguirre’s election fraud claims were baseless and that he was paid $266,400 by the group Liberty Center for God and Country, whose CEO is prominent Texas right-wing activist Steven Hotze.
Hotze was among a group of Republicans who unsuccessfully sued to have nearly 127,000 Harris County ballots tossed out this year. He was also among Republicans who tried — and failed — to stop Gov. Greg Abbott from extending early voting during the coronavirus pandemic, a suit for which Aguirre had provided an affidavit, stating that he was involved in an investigation into a “wide-ranging and fraudulent ballot harvesting scheme” in Harris County.
ps. it's worth noting that the lawyer for the ex-police officer has disputed some of the allegations, namely that the officer ran the victim off the road. He's saying there was some kind of traffic dispute which precipitated the confrontation...