There was recently a shooting at the Hickory, North Carolina, home of GOP congressional candidate Pat Harrigan‘s parents. There were no casualties from the incident but has put the family under “tremendous stress” in the last weeks of his campaign, Harrigan’s mother said on Thursday.
Also read: US midterms: Indiana GOP chief candidate Diego Morales faces voter fraud questions
For the vacant U.S. House seat in North Carolina’s new 14th District, which is headquartered in western Charlotte, Harrigan, a producer of firearms and former member of the U.S. Army Special Forces, is challenging Democratic state Sen. Jeff Jackson. The left-leaning district was created as a result of a protracted redistricting fight in which North Carolina’s congressional district was redrawn to reflect the additional seat it received after the 2020 census.
According to political observers, the 2022 map favours Democrats in six of the state’s 14 districts and Republicans in seven, with one close seat in the suburbs of Raleigh.
Also read: Elon Musk comment suggests Donald Trump won’t be back on Twitter before midterms
Marla Harrigan, 74, told The Associated Press on Thursday that on the evening of October 18, as she and her husband James Harrigan were watching television down the hall, their laundry room window was shattered by a gunshot. When they called 911, the Hickory Police Department responded, and they recorded in the police report that there was a gun involved in the event.
Marla Harrigan reported that the three and five-year-old children of the congressional candidate were soundly sleeping in the room just above where the shooting took place. The children were not awakened by the bullet, which came from a heavily forested region.
Also read: US 2022 midterms: President Joe Biden votes early in Delaware
She said the two children have been living with their grandparents in Hickory, about 57 miles northwest of Charlotte, for much of the campaign cycle. They have since been relocated out of state “out of an abundance of caution after the shooting,” she said, adding that her son is urging his parents to leave town as well.
“It’s just disconcerting, especially with the children there,” Marla Harrigan told the AP. “This campaign is so stressful, and we feel so badly for our son because, you know, he’s terribly stressed about his children … and now they’re gone, they’re not with their parents and it’s just very, very disruptive.”
Also read: Week before midterms, Joe Biden says American democracy is under attack
Hickory Police Department spokesperson Kristen Hart said the department has not made arrests related to the incident and that the investigation is ongoing.
Jordan Shaw, spokesperson for the Harrigan campaign, said the Republican candidate has also received numerous death threats, which they’ve submitted to the police to aid their investigation.
“I’m focused on fixing the economy, lowering prices and keeping our streets safe,” Harrigan said in a statement Thursday. “And it’ll take more than a bullet and death threats to knock this Green Beret off that mission.”