Contact: Les Riley – president, Personhood Alliance, firstname.lastname@example.org
The president of Personhood Tennessee, an affiliate of the Personhood Alliance, was arrested by the FBI yesterday while at home with his family in an early morning raid. At around 7 am, four FBI agents approached Paul Vaughn’s home with guns drawn, and began banging on the door so hard it made the old farmhouse shake.
Paul, a father of 11, had been present at a peaceful pro-life “rescue” that took place over a year ago in March of 2021 in Mount Juliet, Tennessee. He is now being charged with violating the FACE Act.
Paul was never arrested by the local police at the time of the incident. Instead of sitting-in, he had been recording the protest and working to mediate between the pro-life rescuers and the police to ensure everyone’s safety. No one was hurt and no property was damaged as a result of the pro-life “rescue.”
A rescue is a peaceful form of protest that involves non-violent pro-life protesters engaging in America’s long standing tradition of opposing injustice with peaceful civil disobedience. The event of March 2021 involved several pro-life activists sitting in a hallway outside of an abortion clinic in Tennessee singing Christian hymns, reading scripture and praying. For this, the FBI is charging the protesters with violations of the FACE Act, which carry sentences of more than 10 years in prison. Paul is also being charged with conspiracy to violate the FACE Act.
Paul’s arrest, with guns drawn and in front of his children, coincided with President Biden’s press conference marking 100 days since the US Supreme Court overruled Roe v. Wade in the Dobbs v. Jackson case. At that press conference, President Biden announced new guidances from the Department of Education to try to force universities in places like Texas and Tennessee to violate state laws that now protect the right to life of the pre-born. President Biden also announced seven figure tax payer grants to pro-abortion organizations. One of the largest recipients of these grants was Planned Parenthood’s research arm, The Guttmacher Institute.
Yesterday’s arrest of Paul Vaughn appears to be timed to coincide with the President’s press conference as he met with the “Reproductive Rights Taskforce.” Les Riley, president of the Personhood Alliance stated, “What Paul’s arrest shows is that President Biden, the Justice Department and the FBI will use the government to fund their political and ideological allies—like Planned Parenthood, while using law enforcement to persecute and harass their political opponents—like non-violent pro-life activists.”
Gualberto Garcia Jones, general counsel for the Personhood Alliance, commented “The Personhood Alliance stands with Paul Vaughn and the non-violent protesters who are being persecuted by the government simply because of their opinions and in violation of the United States Constitution. After the Dobbs decision and the overturning of the so-called right to abortion, it is time for the US Supreme Court to strike down the FACE Act as an example of unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination that infringes on the right of pro-life Americans to engage in peaceful protests.”
The FBI has yet to make a single arrest after dozens of pro-life pregnancy resource centers have been attacked, vandalized and even burned down.
Paul’s arrest comes just a week after the FBI in Pennsylvania arrested another pro-lifer, Mark Houck in an early morning raid intended to terrorize pro-lifers and their families.
Please prayerfully considering donating to our GiveSendGo campaign to help Paul and his family with legal fees.