THE elderly George Floyd protester whose skull was cracked when shoved by cops is in hiding after receiving death threats from thugs.
Martin Gugino, 75, who was critically injured by police in Buffalo, New York, can’t return safely home from hospital, says his lawyer.
Kelly Zarcone told the New York Post that Gugino has received “concerning and threatening messages and one letter”.
She added: “It is not clear that these are credible death threats.
“In order to avoid the risk, Martin will be recovering in an undisclosed location when he is released from the hospital.
“We do not expect that to happen for a good week, so things could change.”
Gugino ended up fighting for his life in intensive care after joining demonstrations against racism and police brutality following the May 25 killing of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody in Minneapolis.
He landed on the pavement with a sickening crack when pushed backwards by two Buffalo tactical unit officers – with video of the shocking shove going viral on social media.
One officer pushed him with a baton while the second one pushed the elderly man with his hand.
After Gugino fell backwards, blood flowed from his head as officers walked by his still body on June 4.
Aaron Torgalski, 39, and Robert McCabe, 32, the two Buffalo officers, were part of a special riot response squad called the Emergency Response Team (ERT).
They were later suspended and charged with assault.
Gugino was taken to the Erie County Medical Center in a serious condition.
His attorney said Gugino’s skull was fractured and that he hasn’t been able to walk yet.
Zarcone had previously said that his brain was injured and he has started physical therapy, reported the Democrat & Chronicle.
Despite the media interest, Gugino said via his attorney that it was “very unnecessary to focus on me.
“There are plenty of other things to think about besides me.”
His wish to turn the focus elsewhere didn’t stop President Donald Trump from repeating an unsubstantiated claim that Gugino may have been an anti-fascist (Antifa) firebrand.
On June 9 he tweeted: “Buffalo protester shoved by Police could be an ANTIFA provocateur.
“75 year old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to black out the equipment.
“I watched, he fell harder than was pushed… Could be a set up?”
Trump’s allegation was strongly refuted by the protester’s attorney.
Zarcone said: “We are at a loss to understand why the President of the United States would make such dark, dangerous, and untrue accusations against him.”
Gugino’s Twitter account and YouTube videos have been deactivated.
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Pals of the retired computer programmer described Gugino as a passionate advocate for multiple causes on behalf of the poor and disenfranchised.
Gugino has spent his retirement helping multiple causes, including Black Lives Matter.
Longtime friend Mark Colville, who runs Amistad Catholic Worker in New Haven, Connecticut, said: “Martin has a passion for social justice.
“When he sees wrong he wants to be involved in making it right.”
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