(LifeSiteNews) — Pro-life sidewalk counselor and father of seven Mark Houck is planning to press charges against the Biden administration’s Department of Justice (DOJ) for the “reckless” raid conducted at his home in September.
Houck, who was acquitted of alleged violations of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act on Monday, told Steve Bannon during an interview that he will “most definitely” press charges for the federal raid and arrest which “terrorized” his young children.
“It was reckless that day,” he said. “I’m so surprised that someone wasn’t shot, or I wasn’t shot. [If] my kids picked up one of our airsoft guns that they play around with, they easily could have been shot. Extremely reckless behavior on the part of the federal government.”
When Bannon asked about charges for “prosecutorial abuse,” Houck replied affirmatively, saying, “we will be seeking counsel on that. I think Peter Breen at Thomas More Society wants to get myself, my wife, and children in front of Congress and given them the details of what happened.”
Houck detailed the traumatic experience, which occurred before 7 a.m. on Friday, September 23, 2022. He explained how over a dozen heavily armed FBI agents and Pennsylvania state troopers “repeatedly rang the doorbell” and “banged on the door” without announcing who they were.
UPDATE (01/30/23): Mark Houck has been AQUITTED on both charges!
Thanks be to God LifeSiteNews can report that Mark Houck has been found "Not Guilty" on all counts today.
In a statement to LifeSiteNews, Pro-Life Coalition of Pennsylvania spokeswoman and Houck family friend Ashley Garecht said “We rejoice and celebrate that Mark Houck has been found not guilty on all counts.”
“This case was always about a father’s right to protect his son, and never had anything to do with the FACE act,” she said. “We are grateful to the judge for his integrity, and to the jurors for their thoughtful deliberations. We are grateful to Mark’s attorneys who labored so diligently in his defense. And we are grateful for all of those who surrounded and supported Mark and his family in prayer through this challenging ordeal.”
“Most of all we praise and thank God for his protection and provision,” Garecht added. “To Him be all the glory.”
The Thomas More Society is set to hold a press conference today on the 6th street side of the James A. Byrne U.S. Courthouse, 601 Market Street, Philadelphia.
Monday’s verdict came after a tense weekend wait following a deadlocked jury on Friday.
Several hours into Monday’s deliberations after the jury reconvened, an alternate was chosen to replace one of the jurors. Just before 3:00 p.m. EST, the jury delivered its verdict, acquitting Houck on both charges.
Mark Houck, a pro-life Catholic father of 7, became the latest victim of an FBI raid and arrest on the morning of Friday September 23 — for supposed “FACE (Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances) (Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances) Act” violations — at his rural home as his children looked on “screaming.”
The arrest and raid stems from an altercation with a Planned Parenthood worker.
According to Mark’s wife Ryan-Marie, a “pro-abortion protester” would verbally harrass Mark's 12-year old son — hurling vulgar and derogatory statements.
When the protestor encroached in the boy's space, Mark defended his son. At that point, “Mark shoved him away from his child, and the guy fell back,” Ryan-Marie recounts.
The protestor was not injured, but he tried to sue Mark Houck for the assault but his case was thrown out of court in the early summer.
WE CANNOT ALLOW THE LEFT TO HARRASS PRO-LIFE ADVOCATES THIS WAY!
It's vital to stand in solidarity with a pro-family and pro-life man being unjustly persecuted - please SIGN & SHARE our message of support now.
In case you hadn't caught on already, the satanic Biden administration is waging war on Christians. https://t.co/E6ChpZVDYW— Michael (X) Knowles ✊ (@michaeljknowles) September 24, 2022
The description of this arrest sounds like it took place in a totalitarian state. A tragic unraveling of Justice in America. https://t.co/e3vEID7E39— Bishop J. Strickland (@Bishopoftyler) September 25, 2022
If convicted, Houck faces up to a maximum of 11 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and fines of up to $350,000, according to the Justice Department.
Additional conservative pro-life leaders have weighed in — this is why we need your support ASAP.
“Just in the last few days we’ve seen some pretty glaring examples of what appear to be instances of DOJ [Department of Justice] overreach. You’ve got a Catholic father of seven who formed a group designed to encourage young men to be faithful to their commitments, arrested in front of his seven children just recently. You’ve got all these instances of overreach. It’s deeply concerning to us all. These are all things we’re gonna be looking into.” — US Senator Mike Lee
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When they “finally told me it was the FBI,” the pro-life father said, “I’m going to open the door. Stay calm. I have seven babies in here.” Houck was greeted by M16s. After asking why they were at his home, he commented, “you’re here because I rescue babies” and pointed out that they “wouldn’t be here if the Trump administration was in the White House.”
Houck described how the agents denied his requests to get dressed and ready to leave the house, although they did permit him to take his Rosary.
“It gets even worse when I got to the federal building,” he continued. “On the way down, there was light conversation with the agents, two of them. We talked about homeschooling.”
“When I got to the federal building—of course I was cuffed—I was immediately shackled at my waist and shackled on my feet. Now, I’m in the bureau building, I’m on the floor. They put me in a room, a white room with just a table in it, and they chained me to a table. It seemed a little extreme.”
For the next six hours, Houck was chained to the table in what he described as the “most intimate prayer experience of my life” which felt like being “at the foot of Calvary.”
Houck added that U.S. marshals “treated me like I was a convicted felon” and that the shackles were unnecessary and “a pure act of humiliation.”
Both Bannon and Houck commented that the “reckless” actions on behalf of the Biden administration’s DOJ took place “a hundred yards” from Independence Hall in Philadelphia, where the United States Constitution and Declaration of Independence were signed.
During an exclusive interview with LifeSiteNews, Houck said that his family can “still feel the effects” of the raid.
“And no doubt, we will bring that to Congress and we will testify to that and let them know that the DOJ and those who approved this really terrorized our children.”
LifeSiteNews has contacted the Thomas More Society for further details on the anticipated charges but has not yet received a response.
Houck was arrested for a 2021 altercation with a Planned Parenthood escort who verbally harassed the pro-lifer’s son. Charges included alleged violations of the FACE Act as well as assault claims. However, a federal jury unanimously determined that he was not guilty of any of the charges.
Since the FBI raid, the federal government has been blasted for its persecution of pro-life Christians. Republican Senator Josh Hawley from Missouri demanded to know why the DOJ is “arresting Catholic protestors like terrorists.”
In October, House Republicans launched an investigation into the federal agency’s treatment of pro-lifers, sparked by Houck’s unnecessary arrest.
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