Three people who claim they were attacked or subjected to racial slurs at a Donald Trump rally in Kentucky are suing the candidate and his campaign, alleging he encourages an atmosphere of violence.
The suit was filed Thursday on behalf of three protesters seen being pushed by angry crowd members at a March 1 Louisville rally.
"Each time he said 'get them out,' Trump intended for his supporters to use unwanted, harmful physical violence to remove protesters," the suit reads.
Violence at Trump rallies, at least two of which involved audience members sucker punching protesters as they were being led away, have raised questions about whether the Republican front-runner’s speeches and tone are inciting supporters. Trump has denied that he condones violence.
The lawsuit filed Thursday was on behalf of Kashiya Nwanguma, a 21-year-old college student; Molly Shah, a 36-year-old activist; and Henry Brousseau, a 17-year-old high school student.
Nwanguma was seen in video posted online being pushed by members of the crowd. The suit claims some of them shouted racial slurs at her, and it also names as defendants two men who were allegedly the most aggressive in shoving Nwanguma.
The suit says one of the men who assaulted Nwanguma is a member of a group that has been called "white nationalist." Brosseau claims in the suit that he was punched by a member of that group, and Shah said she was shoved. Police reports were made but there have been no charges, according to the suit.
The lawsuit claims Trump incited physical violence against the three protesters by repeating "get ‘em out of here" and that he should have known audience members could act on his statement. The suit cites previous statements Trump has made about paying the legal bills of supporters or suggesting a demonstrator deserved to be "roughed up."
The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the suit. The two Trump audience members named in the suit could not be reached for comment Thursday night. One of those seen in the video and named in the suit has apologized, according to NBC affiliate WLWT.
The suit does not name a dollar amount.
The lawsuit was filed days after Trump’s campaign manager, Corey Lewnadowski, was charged by Florida police with battery for allegedly grabbing former Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields.
Lewandowski was charged with misdemeanor battery. His attorneys say he is innocent, and Trump on Tuesday defended him.
After a 78-year-old man sucker punched a protester being led out of a rally Fayetteville, North Carolina, the sheriff's department considered whether a law against inciting a riot could apply. The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office found the evidence did not support a charge.