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Keith Perry says alleged battery incident resolved, calls it a ‘misunderstanding’

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A Gainesville state lawmaker said a complaint against him alleging battery has been withdrawn.

In a statement Monday evening, Rep. Keith Perry said an incident over the weekend involving an alleged battery “has been resolved.”

According to police reports, Perry was involved in an incident Saturday that included battery and trespassing. The weapons used in the incident, according to the one-page report, were “hands, feet, fists, spitting.”

The incident occurred in the 2200 block of West University Avenue in Gainesville. Perry told POLITICO Florida, which first reported the incident, he was driving down the street when he saw someone taking down one of his campaign signs. He confronted the person, but told POLITICO Florida no punches were thrown, and the incident was “much ado about nothing.”

“After the parties discussed the situation, we agreed this was based on a misunderstanding, as evidenced by the fact the complaint has been withdrawn and the sign put back up by the property owner,” the Gainesville Republican said in a written statement.

But a spokesman for the Gainesville Police Department said Tuesday morning the agency has “not received any sort of official complaint withdrawal.”

“Our case remains open at this time,” a Gainesville PD spokesman said in an email to FloridaPolitics.com.

Sarah Bascom, a spokeswoman for Perry, said in an email Tuesday they had confirmed the complaint was being dropped.

“The complainant may not have contacted them yet, but we confirmed last night that they are dropping the complaint,” she said in an email.

First elected to the Florida House in 2010, Perry is currently running in Senate District 8. He’ll face Democrat Rod Smith in November.

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