A Republican candidate for Congress dropped out of the race after being arrested on the eve of election day.
Thomas Gilmer of Madison, Connecticut, was arrested late Monday and charged with first-degree unlawful restraint and second-degree strangulation, the Hartford Courant reported. Gilmer is accused of being involved in a violent fight with a former girlfriend, an incident that police first began investigating in July.
“Now I find myself in a position where I must put my family and our shared Republican values before my own interests,” Gilmer said in a statement. “I cannot in good conscience move forward in this campaign while I am simultaneously forced to clear my name. And clear my name I will.”
J.R. Romano, chairman of the state’s GOP, said that Gilmer’s primary challenger, Justin Anderson, told him months ago that there was a video of the fight. Romano said he told Anderson to contact law enforcement about the matter.
Gilmer was released on $5,000 bond and is expected to make a court appearance on Tuesday.
“When someone came to us with allegations, we encouraged them to go to the authorities,” Romano said. “While we believe in the due process of the law, the severity and the nature of this is disheartening.”
The seat Gilmer was running for, the state’s 2nd Congressional District, is held by Democratic Rep. Joe Courtney and encompasses much of the eastern part of the state. Courtney has won the district by nearly 30-point margins during the past two election cycles.
Given the proximity to Tuesday’s primary election, Gilmer’s name will still remain on the ballot.
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