by Ashley Sadler, LifeSite News:
The pro-life Catholic speaker, author, and father of seven pleaded not guilty to two counts in a Philadelphia federal court on Tuesday.
PHILADELPHIA (LifeSiteNews) — Mark Houck, the pro-life Catholic author, leader, and father of seven who was arrested by the FBI in a dawn raid Friday morning, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to the federal charges lodged against him.
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LifeSiteNews broke the now-viral story of Houck’s Friday arrest by the FBI. The arrest stemmed from an alleged altercation between Houck and an abortion facility employee outside a downtown Philadelphia Planned Parenthood last year, where Houck was praying with his 12-year-old son.
Prosecutors allege Houck, the founder and president of The King’s Men, which promotes healing for victims of pornography addiction and promotes Christian virtues among men, violated the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act when he allegedly pushed an abortion clinic employee twice in one day in October 2021.
The FACE Act makes it a felony to use force to intimidate, injure, or obstruct pro-life or pro-abortion protestors or abortion facility workers, or to obstruct or destroy abortion facilities or pro-life pregnancy centers.
Houck pleaded not guilty to two counts September 27 in a Philadelphia federal court, Fox News reported.
The pro-life leader’s wife Ryan-Marie told LifeSiteNews on Friday the abortion facility worker had been harassing their 12-year-old son by using vulgar language and getting into the boy’s “personal space,” and that Houck had shoved him away to protect his son.
“He didn’t have any injuries or anything, but he tried to sue Mark,” Ryan-Marie said, adding that the case was thrown out of court in the summer.
On Tuesday, Houck’s attorney, Thomas More Society vice president and senior counsel Peter Breen, backed up Ryan-Marie’s account of the October incident.
Speaking outside the courthouse, Breen said that the abortion worker in question had been “extremely aggressive” and was “harassing” Houck’s son before an “altercation ensued,” Fox reported.