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Woman Charged With Staple-Gunning Her Mom's Political Opponent In The Head

By Emma G. Gallegos in News on Mar 18, 2016 3:30PM

Jessica Soto and Bradley Fichter (Chicago Police Department)

Eds. note: this post contains a graphic image.

Illinois House Representative candidate Robert Zwolinski said that he was viciously attacked earlier this month by two people putting up posters for his opponent Rep. Cynthia Soto outside his Noble Square campaign office. Zwolinski says he was hit in the head with a bottle, kicked and shot at with a staple gun, and he shared a gruesome picture as proof. However, the attorney representing Zwolinski's alleged attackers said that Zwolinski started the fight as "a media stunt... I think that he might have used the staple gun on himself.”

Now, prosecutors have charged two people in the attack on Zwolinski, and there's a twist: one is the daughter of incumbent Rep. Cynthia Soto.

Bradley Fichter and Jessica Soto, both 26, are being charged with three felony counts of aggravated battery in connection with the March 6 attack, according to a release from the Chicago Police Department. Fichter, who claimed that Zwolinski attacked him in a police report, has also been charged with filing a false police report, also a felony.

The attack happened in the 800 block of N. Ashland at 9:15 p.m. Police say that a verbal altercation broke out and escalated. Fichter and Soto struck Zwolinski in the head with a bottle and "a metal object" (the staple, probably). The pair then fled the scene. They were identified later and placed into custody on March 16. Zwolinski told Chicagoist after the attack that the woman attacked him first and she was "screeching… like a velociraptor."

Since Zwolinski came forward with details about the attack, Rep. Cynthia Soto kept her seat, beating him easily with 79.61% of the vote.

Here's the photo Zwolinski tweeted after the attack.

Politician Says He Was Staple-Gunned In The Head By Opponent's Supporters [Graphic Photo]
Staple Gun Assault On House Candidate A 'Media Stunt,' Defense Lawyer Says