(NEW YORK) — Just before the 2020 presidential election, a bus carrying Biden-Harris campaign staffers and volunteers through Texas was tailed by Trump supporters, some of whom were “driving in a way that appeared to be an attempt to push the bus off the road onto the shoulder,” according to court documents.
A lawsuit was filed Friday by former Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis and two former campaign staffers who were on the bus, along with the bus driver, alleging negligence by the San Marcos Police Department.
“For at least ninety minutes, including during the entirety of the stretch of I-35 inside the San Marcos city lines, the Trump Train pursued and terrorized the Plaintiffs,” the lawsuit alleges. “Plaintiffs tried to get help. They repeatedly called 911. They requested police escorts. San Marcos refused to help.”
The suit alleges that the San Marcos Police Department laughed and refused to provide assistance when a staffer called in to report the situation on Oct. 30 2020. ABC News has reached out to the police department for comment.
“I am so annoyed at New Braunfels for doing this to us,” a dispatcher said to one of the police officers over the radio, according to a 911 transcript included in court documents. New Braunfels is a city next to San Marcos, and the bus was heading over the city line.
“They have their officers escorting this Biden bus, essentially, and the Trump Train is cutting in between vehicles and driving — being aggressive and slowing them down to like 20 or 30 miles per hour,” the dispatcher reportedly said. “And they want you guys to respond to help.”
Matt Daenzer, a corporal with the department who is listed as a defendant in the lawsuit, reportedly replied, “No, we’re not going to do it. We will close patrol that, but we’re not going to escort a bus.”
The dispatcher, according to the transcript, told Daenzer the caller was “really worked up over it, and he’s like breathing hard and stuff, like, ‘they’re being really aggressive.’ OK. Calm down.”
Daenzer agreed and reportedly told the dispatcher, “Yeah, well, drive defensively, and it’ll be great.”
When the dispatcher informed the campaign staffer who called 911 for help that the San Marcos Police Department would not provide a police escort, the unnamed staffer replied, “They’ve cut in on me multiple times. They’ve threatened my life on multiple occasions with vehicular collision. I would like an escort immediately.”
The lawsuit alleges the “Trump Train” went unchecked without any police escorting the bus.
“Despite these multiple calls for help from Plaintiffs and others, for the roughly 30 minutes it took to drive through San Marcos on the main highway that runs through it, there were no officers from San Marcos or any other police cars in sight — not on the I-35 exit or entrance ramps, nor on either side of the highway,” it states.
When then-President Donald Trump learned about the situation after videos of the incident were posted to Twitter, he retweeted a video and wrote, “I LOVE TEXAS!,” the court documents also state.
Also listed as defendants in the lawsuit are San Marcos Director of Public Safety Chase Stapp, San Marcos Police Department Assistant Chief of Police Brandon Winkenwerder and the City of San Marcos.
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