BULLHEAD CITY — The Bullhead City Police Department said Friday that Thursday night’s vandalism at the Mohave County Republican Central Committee didn’t appear to be the result of gunfire.
At least one of the six people in the building at the time begged to differ.
“It was a gunshot, dammit,” said Al Scigliano, a U.S military veteran who has years of experience with a variety of firearms. “I know a gunshot when I hear it.”
Whatever it was, it is being treated as an aggravated assault and criminal damage. It originally was being treated as a weapons offense.
“The investigation revealed that an unknown object penetrated through the window and blinds,” the Bullhead City Police Department posted on its Facebook page Friday morning. “At this time, police do not know what caused the damage to the glass window; however, it is not believed to be caused by a firearm.”
No injuries were reported and no suspects have been identified. No one was seen in the area or fleeing — either by vehicle or on foot — around 7:20 p.m., when the incident first was reported.
“I’ve heard a lot of gunfire in my life,” said Scigliano, who, along with the others in the building, was participating in a Trump Victory online organizing event. “Sounded like a 9mm. The projectile came through the glass and went into the ceiling.
“All of us heard it. You don’t hear a noise like that ... (unless it’s a gunshot).”
Scigliano said there was a “round hole” in both the glass and the blinds. He said the projectile traveled in a 20-degree angle into the ceiling, bringing down “popcorn” debris.
“I don’t think it was a driveby,” he added. “I came to the conclusion that it was somebody walking by.”
He said he didn’t want to speculate on whether any individuals were targeted specifically or if the incident was politically motivated.
“I’d have to make any assumptions,” he said. “It’s kind of crazy.”
Kelli Ward, chairwoman of the Arizona Republican Party, did say she believed it was politically motivated.
“Last night, there was an unmistakable attack on a clearly marked local Republican office in Bullhead City, Arizona, when our volunteers — several of whom have military backgrounds — heard a gunshot shatter a window near the front door,” Ward said in a statement Friday. “Thankfully, no one was hurt.
“After recent horrendous attacks against supporters of President (Donald) Trump in Florida, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and now here, enough is enough. Americans should not have to live in fear that expressing their political beliefs will result in physical harm or retaliation.”
Bullhead City Police Department spokeswoman Emily Fromelt said the investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information about the incident is urged to contact the Bullhead City Police Department at 928-763-1999.