Reverend Raphael Warnock, a Democratic candidate for a US Senate seat from Georgia, accused his Republican rival of ‘playing games’ while refusing to address a video showing his ex-wife accusing him of running over her foot with his car.
Warnock, who is challenging incumbent Senator Kelly Loeffler for in one of two runoff elections on January 5, declined to comment on the police video, which first surfaced last week on Tucker Carlson’s Fox News prime time show.
‘I’m going to stay focused on my family which includes their mother and I’m going to stay focused on the people of Georgia who during a pandemic are still waiting on relief all these months later while politicians including Kelly Loeffler are busy playing games,’ Warnock told WGCL-TV.
In the police bodycam video, Warnock’s ex-wife, Ouleye Ndoye, 35, accuses her then-husband of running over her foot in his car while trying to drive away with their children during a domestic dispute in March.
Reverend Raphael Warnock (pictured above at a campaign event in Columbus, Georgia, on Monday) has refused to comment on a police bodycam video in which his then-wife accused him of running over her foot during a domestic dispute in March
Ouleye Ndoye, 35, told police that she ‘tried to keep the way that he acts under wraps.’ She alleged that Warnock drove his car over her foot while trying to drive away with their two children. A police report cited medical officials as finding no signs of trauma to her foot
At the time of the incident, the couple was in the process of divorcing. Warnock (left) and Ndoye are seen above in Atlanta in September 2017
Ndoye tells police in the clip that he is ‘a great actor’ obsessed with his reputation. She then tearfully tells officers
Ndoye works to combat human trafficking in the office of the mayor of Atlanta, Keisha Lance Bottoms.
Warnock told cops he did not believe he ran over her foot and medics found no injuries.
He said the pair had argued that morning over divorce papers while their two kids were present.
Ndoye told officers that she ‘tried to keep the way that he acts under wraps’ for the sake of the election.
Medical officials did not find visible signs of injury on his wife’s foot.
A police report, referring to Grady Memorial Hospital first-responders, noted that an inspection of Ndoye’s foot showed no broken bones, swelling or contusions.
Warnock was never charged with a crime.
Warnock, 51, told the officers in March he did not believe he had run her over
Warnock and Ndoye, pictured in their 2014 wedding, have two children together
The couples’ divorce was finalized in May, after four years of marriage.
Loeffler’s campaign released a statement in response to the video which read: ‘Domestic abuse is a serious issue that Georgians deserve answers to as to what exactly happened.
‘Unfortunately, it follows a pattern of what we’ve seen that Raphael Warnock has not answered the hard questions in this campaign.’
Warnock and Ndoye were arguing in March over whether their two children should be allowed to travel to Senegal to visit relatives on her side of the family.
Police were called to their home, and Warnock is caught on camera telling the officer his wife called the police on him, alleging that he had run over her foot.
‘Did you run over her foot?’ the officer asks.
‘I don’t think so,’ Warnock says. ‘I do not think so.’
He says that she was standing by the car, when he tried to slowly drive away.
Warnock is running for election to the Senate, representing Georgia, in a vote for January 5
‘I don’t want to get into a shoving match with her. So I go back around, get back in the car, and I slowly start to move, like I’m gonna move forward. Then she claims I ran over her foot,’ Warnock tells the officer.
Ndoye then speaks to the police, with Warnock some distance away, out of earshot.
She tells the officer that she had been trying to get Warnock’s signature for a passport so she can take their children to Africa for a family funeral.
‘He’s like, ‘Ouleye, close the door. I’m leaving,’ she tells the officer.
‘And I was like, ‘just hear me out. If your mom died, and I had the kids. Wouldn’t you want me to let them go with you to the funeral? And he just starts backing the car up. He wasn’t going fast, I’m not bleeding. But I just can’t believe he’d run me over.’
Asked whether she thought it was intentional, she replied: ‘Obviously. I was standing here. The door was open and I’m leaning into the car. How can you drive the car when I’m leaning into it?’
She told the officer she wanted to file a report.
‘This man’s running for United States Senate, and all he cares about right now is his reputation,’ she said.
‘I’ve been very quiet about the way that he is for the sake of my kids and his reputation.
‘I’ve tried to keep the way that he acts under wraps for a long time, and today he crossed the line. So that is what is going on here. And he’s a great actor. He is phenomenal at putting on a really good show.’
Warnock is attempting to claim the Senate seat held by Kelly Loeffler in the January vote
Loeffler, a sitting senator for Georgia, is facing a tough challenge from Warnock
When her accusations were first made public, in March, Warnock – pastor at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, where Martin Luther King served – addressed the incident in a sermon.
‘God looks on the heart. We live on the outside. God knows what’s happening on the inside,’ he said.
‘And while divorce is not ideal, divorce is not the worst thing that can happen to you. So pray for us.
‘The second thing I want to say to you – and I hope you will hear me because I’m going to say it once. I’ve been here 15 years, almost 15 years now. I want you to know that I am the man that you have known me to be. The work that we’ve done together in public reflects my values and who I am in private. Same man in public and in private.’