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Government, Politics & Issues

Former Carnahan worker may sue blogs linking him to firebombing

The lawyer for Russ Carnahan's former campaign worker accused by some of tossing a molotov cocktail into the congressman's campaign office says the worker is innocent and no evidence links him to the incident.

"He's vigorously denying the allegations,'' said lawyer Susan Roach, referring to her client, Chris Powers.

She confirmed that police investigating the Aug. 17 incident interviewed Powers, but added, "there's no evidence that would place him at the scene of the crime."

Roach said today that she and her client also are considering possible legal action against the conservative blogs tying him to the crime.

"That's something we're reviewing," said Roach. "It's not out of the realm of possibility."

"It's certainly not appropriate for these factions to be turning him into a political scapegoat,'' the lawyer added.

Powers volunteered for Carnahan's campaign and worked briefly as a canvasser. The congressman said at a news conference earlier this week that Powers had been fired shortly before the firebombing for "not doing his job." However, Carnahan took pains not to accuse Powers of being a suspect.

In the firebombing, someone broke a window at the back of Carnahan's campaign office and tossed in a molotov cocktail, which did minor damage. 

Roach said that Powers had a slight disagreement with the campaign, but added, "it's a stretch to create a nexis between that and the criminal activity."

Powers, his lawyer said, remains a supporter of Carnahan.

Various conservative blogs have been circulating video and photos of Powers, who was present at several Carnahan public events last year that touched off confrontations between his supporters and Tea Party activists.

The St. Louis circuit attorney's office has not charged anyone with the crime. Ed Postawko, the chief warrant officer, said today that he could say little because "an investigation is actively underway."

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon.

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