Trump backers raise thousands to pay legal fees of man who popped ‘Baby Trump’ balloon

A responding officer and an unidentified man stands by a deflated Baby Trump balloon during President Donald Trump's visit to an NCAA college football game between Louisiana State and Alabama. (Stephanie Taylor/The Tuscaloosa News via AP)

Supporters of President Trump jumped in to help one of their own who took matters a little too far over the weekend; the man stuck a knife into a huge caricature-balloon that depicts Trump as a baby in a diaper, and was subsequently caught and charged by police.

When the president went to Tuscaloosa, Ala. for the Alabama-Louisiana State University game Saturday, the usual small band of protesters gathered. They brought along the giant balloon, one of many that have appeared at protests of the president.

Hoyt Deau Hutchinson, 32, of Tuscaloosa posted a Facebook video before the incident saying he was “going down here to make a scene,” and to watch the news because “I’m fixin’ to pop this balloon …’” the Daily Mail reported.

Police say Hutchison slashed the 20-foot balloon, making an eight-foot gash. Police caught him and charged him with criminal mischief.

According to a statement from Tuscaloosa police, “Officers observed Hoyt Deau Hutchinson, age 32 of Tuscaloosa, AL, cut into the ‘Baby Trump’ balloon, and then (attempt) to flee the area. Officers apprehended the suspect and took him into custody on a charge of Criminal Mischief First Degree. Hoyt was transported to Tuscaloosa County Jail where he was held on a $2,500 bond,”

Then the Trump supporters stepped in.

Supporters raised more than $38,000 on GoFundMe, and the site there reads: “Help raise money to pay legal fees and restitutions for Hoyt. He was charged with a felony criminal mischief after deflation of the disrespectful baby trump balloon. Hoyt made sure our beloved president didn’t have to see this disrespectful balloon on the streets of town today!!”

More than 1,700 people have donated so far.

The page said the money would be used to pay his legal fees, and “all proceeds not needed for legal fees will be donated to the Trump 2020 campaign to further support this great country.”

Another GoFundMe page, called “FREE HOYT,” raised $13,000 in just one day.

Hutchison is reportedly unapologetic, saying in another video after his release that he would “do it again given the opportunity,” The Hill reported.


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