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Louisville mayor takes sucker punch in stride, calls on city to 'send a message' about attacks

Darron Cummings/AP
FILE - Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer speaks during a news conference, May 30, 2020, in Louisville, Ky. Fischer was punched in the city's Fourth Street Live! entertainment district on Saturday night, June 18, 2022. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

The man accused of landing a blow on Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer that knocked him to the ground on Saturday has pleaded not guilty. As for the mayor, he’s responding with humor and a message that violence isn't how businesses in conducted in civil society.

Police have yet to release information about a possible motive, but 30-year-old Antwon Brown has been arraigned in Jefferson District Court on a misdemeanor charge of fourth degree assault — over a punch caught on camera at Fourth Street Live.

Responding later, the mayor opted for a lighthearted take on the hit, which left him with redness and a sore neck.

"I took the blow, got back down, channeled my inner-Muhammed Ali, and said gotta get right back up. So glad to see I can still take a punch."
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer

But despite the joking tone, the mayor went on to tell WDRB in Louisville it’s behavior that can’t be tolerated. He said the next step is to "find the people that did these things and hold them accountable because you gotta send a message that this is not allowed in a civil society like we have."

Fischer said the attack isn’t just evidence of a breakdown in his city. He said the country is going through difficult times and you see it in "school board meetings, with Supreme Court justices, and governors."

Louisville is coming off two years of record high homicide numbers and other violence stats that have officials looking to break the cycle.

Asked about the incident and her own safety concerns, Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton told WUKY that people who serve in positions of power are always "a little bit at risk because people who are angry about whatever can strike out, but no I'm not real concerned. I have a good security team who watch out for me in places where there are crowds and things like that, so we're prepared."

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.