Trump supporter attacked with sledgehammer in New Jersey

By Jen Krausz on
 April 8, 2024

An outspoken supporter of former President Donald Trump was hospitalized after being attacked repeatedly with a sledgehammer on Friday in Middletown, New Jersey. 

Rocky Granata, 64, who drives an RV around town with prominent pro-Trump and Make America Great Again signs covering it, was attacked by Michael Gonzalez, 36 at Crown Tire in the Port Monmouth section of the city.

Gonzalez allegedly struck Granata in the head with a sledgehammer five times at the tire center. Granata's car was seen parked there after the assault happened.

Gonzalez, who lives in Philadelphia, was detained at the scene by witnesses until the police arrived.

Charged with attempted murder

He was charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, unlawful possession of a weapon, and possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes. He is currently in custody in the Monmouth County Jail awaiting a hearing.

Police are adamant that the attack was not politically motivated, but was an ongoing dispute between the two men.

At least two of Granata's adult children posted on Facebook about Gonzalez trying to "kill" their father. One of the posts also indicated that the reason was an ongoing dispute unrelated to politics.

Other Facebook posts indicated that Granata was released from the hospital after being treated for his wounds and was selling eclipse glasses Monday in the parking lot of a local Walmart.

MAGA hat saved him

Gonzalez also allegedly pushed a woman at the tire store, causing her to fall down. She was also treated at a local hospital and released.

Granata told a local news outlet that Gonzalez was his girlfriend's son. Granata and his girlfriend had been dating for five years.

"When I met him he had a heroin problem and he was a thief," Granata said. "His father just died of heroin and his other friends died. He's been in and out of different situations."

Granata also said that his MAGA hat probably saved his life.

"If I didn't have this hat on my head I'm sure that sledgehammer would have gone right through my head," Granata said.

Trump has not commented on the incident so far.

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