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"I thought he was going to kill me," elderly man says of GOP Chair candidate over signage dispute

Young showing how candidate Wilson beat him up; Wilson shown below

Young showing how candidate Wilson beat him up; Wilson shown below

It started over a campaign sign... and ended with the arrest of a candidate for an East Texas county Republican Party Chairman and facial bruising and bandaging of an elderly man. Seventy-year-old Orange County, Texas GOP chair candidate Jerry Wilson is charged with assaulting Kenneth Young, whom he accused of removing his carefully placed ("meticulously placed") political signs. Wilson does not deny assaulting Young. In fact, he said he would do it all over again. And he boasted that he "kicked his ass." His only regret, he told TV reporters, is that his wife is angry with him over the whole incident. Eighty-three-year old Young said he did not take Wilson's signs down, which were placed in the yard of a community center and voting precinct in the small town of Vidor. He did say, though, that he created and placed signs advising people not to vote for Wilson, who he called a RINO (Republican in Name Only). The community center was the location of early voting... Wilson was there as a candidate and Young was there to support other candidates, basically, "anyone but" Wilson. The men agree they've been involved in a long-running political feud... one that has been going on for at least 20 years, according to interviews with Beaumont, Texas TV station KFDM. "I've been in politics a long time," Wilson told KFDM News. "If your sign you've meticulously placed is pulled up and replaced by somebody else's signs-- I was so damn mad and he was sitting there." So, what does one do when one of his election signs is removed and the suspect is sitting in the area where the sign once was? Well, according to Wilson, they kick ass. For real. "I walked over to him and said 'you're pulling up my signs and destroying them.' He said 'what are you going to do about it?' It was a fight. He was landing punches, too. I can tell you this-he will remember the day," "Whatever my punishment is, I'll take it. If I had to do it over again I don't think I'd change one thing. He deserved what he got." Young said he did not say anything to Wilson, however. Nor did he throw any punches at him. He never even got the chance, he explained, as Wilson knocked him to the ground and punched him in the face repeatedly while on top of him. "He just walked up to me and started cursing at me, and then hauled off and hit me and knocked me over out of my chair and fell on top of me and then started beating me," Young told KFDM. "And I mean he just wasn't tapping me he was coming down like that." Young said he had the cuts and bruises to prove it. And he does. "I thought he was gonna kill me," Young said. "It should have never happened but as far as me being apologetic or having any remorse, the only remorse I got is my wife is mad," Wilson said, in a separate interview with KFDM. Wilson said he asked Young if he moved the signs. "He said yes, what are you gonna do about it. I believe you got a pretty good imagination of what happened. You got pictures of him. I whooped his ---," Wilson said. "I never said one word, not one word," Young said. Young admitted making and putting up signs urging people not to vote for Wilson. But he said he did not take down the 20 signs or so that Wilson accused him of. In fact, Vidor Police said it was actually poll workers who removed several of Wilson's campaign signs because they violated laws prohibiting campaign signs from being posted within 100 yards of a polling place. Vidor Police arrested Wilson on a charge of assault. Young said he wants to seek a restraining order against Wilson. If convicted of the assault, Wilson could face up to a year in prison.
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