Misguided GOP tracker follows judge instead of Joe DonnellyAugust 1st, 2012 at 5:08 pm by Jim Shella under Jim Shella's Political Blog
Kurt Holland of Fishers was working for the Republican Party and says he was assigned to track Democratic Senate candidate Joe Donnelly. A tracker is a political operative with a camera who trails an opposing candidate hoping to record damaging video. Holland followed Marion County Circuit Judge Jose Salinas instead.
“I was scared,” said Salinas. “I didn’t know what this guy wanted.” Judge Salinas attended a Democratic picnic at a home in Pike Township on Saturday. He saw the tracker shooting video when he left and he also saw him get in a car and follow him. “So, I speed up,” said Salinas. “He matches my speed. I slow down. He matches my speed so I’m thinking, oh, what’s this guy want, right?”
It took place all the way from 71st Street and I-65 until Salinas got off the interstate to go home at the Raymond Street exit. “Chasing me for sixteen miles and right on me” said Salinas, who has been the target of threats, “and making me believe that he’s a threat to me.”
Salinas went to police who found tracker Kurt Holland. He admitted photographing the event and chasing after Judge Salinas, according to a police report, but said he thought he was following Joe Donnelly. There is little resemblance between the two.
State Democratic chairman Dan Parker says the Republicans should apologize even though his party uses trackers, too. “They don’t track people home,” said Parker of his employees. “That crosses the line.”
Holland told police his “assignment was reveal how the ‘party of the poor’ is actually led by rich people, in nice cars, in rich neighborhoods.” “This gentleman put the fear of God into me for 25 minutes in terms of when it was actually happening,” said Salinas, “and for 8 hours, the uncertainty was just unbearable.” That’s when police told him there was no threat.
Holland told police that he was hired by Pete Seat. Seat works for the state Republican committee and wouldn’t comment directly on the contents of the police report. He did say that Holland is no longer employed by the Republicans. Attempts to reach Holland were unsuccessful.