Gianforte apologizes for assault, agrees to $50k payment to jour - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Gianforte apologizes for assault, agrees to $50k payment to journalism group

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MTN News file photo. MTN News file photo.

Congressman-elect Greg Gianforte is issuing an apologetic letter to the reporter he’s accused of assaulting on the eve of the May 25th special election.

He’s also going to pay $50,000 to an organization that seeks to protect the rights of journalists.

News of the action came Wednesday evening as The Guardian reported details of the agreement with the Montana Republican. He was accused of “body slamming” reporter Ben Jacobs during a confrontation in Bozeman on May 24 when Jacobs pressed Gianforte for his comment on a proposed repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

According to The Guardian, Gianforte wrote to Jacobs that his response to the reporter’s question was “unprofessional, unacceptable and unlawful.”

The payment will be made to the Committee to Protect Journalists, with Gianforte writing “I made a mistake and humbly ask for your forgiveness.”

Earlier Wednesday, a Gallatin County Justice Court judge agreed to grant Gianforte a continuation in his appearance on a misdemeanor assault charge stemming from the incident. 

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