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Man charged after punching protester at rally

Posted at 10:32 AM, Mar 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-11 10:32:49-05

A man at a Donald Trump rally was taken into custody, after punching a black man protesting at a rally in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

78-year-old John Franklin McGraw was charged with assault and disorderly conduct.

Police say McGraw attacked Rakeem Jones as he was being escorted out of Crown Coliseum after disrupting the rally. McGraw is shown on cell phone video punching Jones as Trump supporters cheer.

McGraw was later interviewed by "Inside Edition" and said Jones deserved to be hit and "the next time we see him, we might have to kill him".

He said Jones was attacked because of how he looked saying, "We don't know who he is, but we know he was not acting like an American."

A day after the rally McGraw was arrested and charged. Donald Trump's campaign has distanced itself from the incident.

At Thursday's Republican debate, Trump said some of the protesters who have been removed from his rallies are "bad dudes and have done bad things." He said the supporters who attend his rallies "have anger that's unbelievable".

Trump also said he hopes he hasn't played a role in inciting the violence with some of his provocative language.