A jury struck a huge blow against Joe Biden’s intimidation of the pro-life movement on Monday. Earlier in the fall, the Department of Justice began sending SWAT Teams to arrest activists who campaigned against abortion.
One of them was Mark Houck, a pro-life writer, sidewalk counselor and father of seven who faced a SWAT team sent by AG Merrick Garland as they busted through his rural home to arrest him, terrifying his seven children.
Photos from the morning the FBI arrested Mark Houck in front of his children. pic.twitter.com/NbLq5bnDQa
— Mary Margaret Olohan (@MaryMargOlohan) October 4, 2022
LifesiteNews reported at the time that a “SWAT team of 25 to 30 FBI agents swarmed their property with around 15 vehicles at 7:05 a.m. this morning. Having quickly surrounded the house with rifles in firing position, “they started pounding on the door and yelling for us to open it.”
When they came in, they ordered the kids to stay upstairs. “Our staircase is open, so [the kids] were all at the top of the stairs which faces the front door, and I was on the stairs as well, coming down. The kids were all just screaming. It was all just very scary and traumatic,” she explained.
After asking them why they were at the house, the agents said they were there to arrest Mark. When Ryan-Marie asked for their warrant, “they said that they were going to take him whether they had a warrant or not.”
Houck was accused of violating the FACE Act, a law that prohibits the use of physical force, threat of physical force, or physical obstruction to intentionally injure, intimidate, interfere with or attempt to injure, intimidate or interfere with any person who is obtaining an abortion; the use of physical force, threat of physical force, or physical obstruction to intentionally injure, intimidate, interfere with or attempt to injure, intimidate or interfere with any person who is exercising or trying to exercise their First Amendment right of religious freedom at a place of religious worship; and the intentional damage or destruction of a reproductive health care facility or a place of worship.
While protesting at an abortion clinic, Houck allegedly “shoved” a pro-abortion man away from his 12-year-old son after the man entered ‘the son’s personal space” and refused to stop hurling “crude…inappropriate and disgusting” comments.
Despite local authorities not charging him and a judge tossing a civil case against him, the White House wanted to throw the book at Houck, hoping that it would intimidate other pro-lifers, but a jury thought otherwise.
The Washington Times reported, “Jurors in the trial, which began on Jan. 24, remained deadlocked on a verdict as of Jan. 27. By midafternoon on Jan. 30, however, they had reached a verdict resulting in Houck’s acquittal.”
“We are, of course, thrilled with the outcome,” stated Peter Breen, executive vice president and head of litigation at the Chicago-based Thomas More Society, which represented Houck in the proceedings. “Mark and his family are now free of the cloud that the Biden administration threw upon them. We took on the Goliath — the full might of the United States government — and won. The jury saw through and rejected the prosecution’s discriminatory case, which was harassment from day one. The Biden Department of Justice’s intimidation against pro-life people and people of faith has been put in its place.”
A visibly relieved Mr. Houck said outside the federal courthouse in Philadelphia that he was grateful for his family, his attorneys and “the justice that we feel was finally served,” wrote The Washington Times.
Mark Houck, his family, and supporters pray after he is found not guilty on FACE Act charges. pic.twitter.com/OoPMvx6tIP
— Joe Bukuras (@JoeBukuras) January 30, 2023
“We took on Goliath—the full might of the United States government—and won,” Breen added. “The jury saw through and rejected the prosecution’s discriminatory case, which was harassment from Day One. This is a win for Mark and the entire pro-life movement. The Biden Department of Justice’s intimidation against pro-life people and people of faith has been put in its place,” according to The Daily Signal.
“Breen previously told [the outlet] that the Justice Department sent “20-plus heavily armed federal agents with shields and long guns” to arrest Houck in late September as his children watched “to intimidate pro-life people and people of faith.”
Houck pled not guilty to the federal charges. His legal team argued that the Justice Department was violating the Constitution by engaging in ‘viewpoint discrimination’ and ‘selective prosecution’ against Houck, violating the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment’s protection for the free exercise of religion.
‘The Biden administration has filed two brazenly defective and discriminatory charges against Mark Houck under the FACE Act, and both should be dismissed,’ Breen said in a statement earlier this month. ‘Both counts allege that Mark Houck interfered with a so-called volunteer abortion patient escort, when in reality, Houck had a one-off altercation with a man who harassed Houck’s minor son, approximately 100 feet from the abortion business and across the street.’
‘This case is being brought solely to intimidate people of faith and pro-life Americans,” Breen aded. ‘Mark Houck is innocent of these lawless charges, and we intend to prove that in court.’
Luckily for Houck, and everyone who supports freedom of speech, the jury stopped Joe Biden and his cronies in their tracks.