Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer (D) had just given someone a hug Saturday evening when a man walked up and punched him, causing the mayor to fall backward onto the ground in downtown Louisville, according to video footage of the incident.
Fischer was not seriously injured, according to Louisville police, who are now searching for the attacker. The incident took place at the Fourth Street Live retail complex.
By Sunday, the mayor appeared relatively unshaken.
“You know, occasionally in life things happen,” Fischer told WLKY. “You know, you get knocked down. You gotta get back up and keep going.”
The attack on Fischer came about four months after a gunman opened fire at the campaign office of Craig Greenberg, a Democratic candidate running to replace Fischer, who is in his third and final term as mayor. Staffers used tables to barricade themselves inside the office, and Greenberg said after the February incident that one bullet had grazed his sweater. A local activist, Quintez Brown, faces both state and federal charges in connection with the incident; he has pleaded not guilty, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.
On Saturday night, Greenberg wrote on Twitter that Fischer and his family were in his thoughts.
“Whoever is responsible for this assault needs to turn themselves in,” Greenberg wrote. “We cannot solve our disagreements with violence.”
Police have not publicly stated the attacker’s potential motive, and it is unclear what Fischer was doing at the downtown Louisville complex when he was punched. Earlier on Saturday, Fischer attended the city’s Pride parade, according to his Twitter account.
The incident raised questions about how the attacker slipped past the mayor’s security detail and how he was able to escape. Jessica Wethington, a spokeswoman for the mayor, told the Courier-Journal that the mayor’s security detail was present during the attack.
She said the mayor was “fine” immediately following the assault and needed no serious medical treatment, adding: “The mayor says he is glad he can still take a punch.”