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Man Accused Of Punching Council President Scott Files Counter Charges

Emily Sullivan/WYPR

The man who allegedly punched City Council President Brandon Scott has filed his own police report, alleging it was instead Scott who assaulted him during an altercation before a mayoral forum earlier this month.  

Through a spokeswoman, Scott categorically denied the allegations. 

The incident, first reported by the Baltimore Brew, took place outside the Reginald F. Lewis Museum on Feb. 5. A surveillance video of the incident was obtained by the Baltimore Sun; the grainy tape depicts Michael T. Moore shoving the council president before throwing a punch toward his face.

Scott has said that he was not injured and that the punch only grazed his jaw. The Democrat filed a restraining order and charges with city police against Moore earlier this month.

Moore was at the event to distribute campaign literature for Shelia Dixon, who is running for mayor alongside Scott. He was removed from the Dixon campaign shortly after the incident.

Moore alleged in a report he filed Tuesday that Scott was the one to throw a punch. Police have not vetted his allegations.

“Mr. Scott walked toward me and pushed me with his arms and body,” Moore wrote. “As he pushed past me, Mr. Scott struck me again. After Mr. Scott was past me, he turned and walked back toward me in a menacing manner that placed me in imminent fear that he was about to strike again.”

Stefanie Mavronis, a spokeswoman for Scott, denied the claims. 

“We don’t know why Mr. Moore is filing this false statement, but what he claims is patently false, and is contradicted by people who witnessed his behavior, his own statements on social media before and after the incident, and by his termination by the Dixon campaign,” Mavronis said in a statement. “City residents will not be fooled and the Council President will not be distracted from the important work of serving the people of Baltimore.” 

Ellis Staten, who works for State Senator Mary Washington, another mayoral candidate, witnessed the incident and told the Baltimore Brew Scott did nothing “to provoke this.”

Staten, who was among about a dozen people leafletting at the museum entrance, said Moore “pushed (Scott) pretty hard,” and as Scott tried to walk around him to get into the building “the guy blocked his way and then hit him, like, the face or the shoulder.”

Moore has posted violent threats about politicians, including Scott, on Facebook. A hearing for his report is scheduled for March 23.  

Emily Sullivan is a city hall reporter at WYPR, where she covers all things Baltimore politics. She joined WYPR after reporting for NPR’s national airwaves. There, she was a reporter for NPR’s news desk, business desk and presidential conflicts of interest team. Sullivan won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for an investigation into a Trump golf course's finances alongside members of the Embedded team. She has also won awards from the Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association for her use of sound and feature stories. She has provided news analysis on 1A, The Takeaway, Here & Now and All Things Considered.
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