But don’t worry, he wasn’t planning anything crazy. He was just stalking a woman he went on a date with:
Hackbarth, R-Cedar, is in his eighth term representing District 48A. He represents Elk River, Oak Grove and East Bethel and is considered a strong advocate of conservation issues and an opponent of abortion rights.
He said Tuesday that he is not familiar with the Highland Park area and didn’t know he was at Planned Parenthood when he pulled into the empty lot so that he could look for a woman he had met online.
Hackbarth said he had coffee with the woman on Nov. 15, and asked her to dinner the next night but she told him she couldn’t because of a commitment she had with a female friend in Highland Park. Hackbarth said he felt that she might have been seeing a man instead, so he parked his car and walked around the block looking for her car. (The security guard spotted Hackbarth’s gun when he got out of his car and put on a winter coat.)
Oh! Yeah, stalking a woman you just met because you’re afraid she is seeing another man is much better than hanging out in front of a Planned Parenthood with a loaded gun.
“I was not a jealous boyfriend,” said Hackbarth, who is in the process of divorcing his wife of 25 years. “I was just trying to check up on her. It’s totally a misunderstanding.”
Hackbarth said that he always carries his fully loaded gun, and understands why the security guard was alarmed.
“Jealous boyfriend”? “Check up on her”? “Totally a misunderstanding”? According to the City Pages,
Hackbarth, who represents District 48a in Anoka County, is a big outdoorsman. Elected to the House in 1994, he’s to be the next chairman of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee. And he has a permit to carry a concealed gun. Police didn’t file charges. But they did take away the Smith & Wesson. He picked it up yesterday, and said he can’t understand what all the fuss is about.
Hackbarth can’t understand why people are fussing about the fact that not only was a known anti-choice lawmaker hanging out in a Planned Parenthood parking lot with a loaded gun, but that his explanation was that it’s not what it looks like, he was just stalking a woman he just met.
No big deal.
Officers tested him for alcohol, but none was detected, according to a report. Police reports note officers found extra ammunition for the revolver, a map and binoculars in the front of Hackbarth’s vehicle. The lawmaker said the binoculars were there — as was other hunting equipment in the back of his red Ford pickup — from a deer hunting trip the weekend before.
Hackbarth has no criminal record. Police found his name in a criminal database as an alias for Paul Joseph Hackbarth. Tom Hackbarth told police that was his brother, who was killed about six years ago in Illinois during a bank robbery.
His story just gets weirder and weirder.