Lawmaker Recounts Horrific Assault As Repeat Offender's Sentencing Looms

By James Wilson November 15, 2023

Minnesota Congresswoman demands justice for shocking elevator attack, revealing her struggle with longterm trauma.

In a call for stern punishment against her attacker, Rep. Angie Craig, a Democratic representative from Minnesota, beseeches a federal judge to bring her offender to justice. Kendrid Hamlin, the perpetrator with an extensive criminal record, admitted to attacking her in the elevator of her Washington, D.C. apartment building back in February.

Ahead of Hamlin's scheduled sentencing this Thursday, Craig made submitted a victim-impact statement revealing the tremendous distress this incident left on her family. "My family members continue to be concerned for my safety," Craig disclosed, emphasizing that the psychological damage caused by the assault on her is far from over.

Detailing the incident, she recounts, "He grabbed my neck and slammed me into the steel wall. He punched me in the face." Furthermore, she shared that subsequent to the incident, she has been plagued by death threats and doxing due to the media hype surrounding the incident.

Federal prosecutors will prompt D.C. District Chief Judge James Boasberg to sentence Hamlin to 39 months in prison for his crimes. They hold Hamlin responsible for inflicting injuries by punching Craig in the jaw during the assault. However, they also underscore Hamlin's notorious criminal past. "In addition to his convictions for violent conduct, he has at least nine prior additional arrests for violent or threatening conduct," the sentencing memo stated, the implication being that a strict sentence is warranted.

Interestingly, Craig's case is not isolated. There have been numerous assaults against lawmakers, their aides or family members in recent times. Situations include an attack on staff members of Rep. Gerry Connolly, a Virginia Democrat, and a late 2022 assault on Paul Pelosi, spouse of California's Rep. Nancy Pelosi. Both lawmakers were absent during the respective assaults.

Prosecutors will frame Craig's assault as a breach of her safety in a familiar setting that had profound emotional consequences, saying "The defendant's early morning assault of a woman in her own apartment building elevator transformed an everyday ritual…into a traumatic ordeal that has caused lasting emotional damage."

Craig also previously told CBS News that the entire incident transpired when Hamlin followed her into an elevator, trapped her, and insistently demanded to enter her apartment. Considering Hamlin's behavior, she suspected him to be under the influence of a substance.

Doubling down on her determination to ensure Hamlin faces the consequences of his actions, Craig asserted, "I was assault No. 13 on his record. And I'm going to do everything in my power to make sure there's not a 14, a 15, a 20th."