Joseph Arcidiacono, 33, was arrested in early November on a felony count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after he hurled multiple White Claw cans at Cruz, a Texas Republican, during the Astros World Series parade. Video footage of the attack shows one of the containers hitting Cruz in the chest.
But on Friday, a grand jury concluded there was insufficient evidence against him, leading the 182nd District Court to drop the felony charge against him.
Arcidiacono seemed to have admitted to the crime shortly after his arrest, telling cops, “I know, I’m an idiot. I’m sorry,” according to prosecutors.
But Arcidiacono’s attorney, Bill Stradley, insisted in court that his client did not intend to harm Cruz.
“Instead, this was an Astros fan trying to toss drinks from his cooler to the Senator during a championship parade and not realizing how it would be perceived until he saw security’s reaction,” he claimed.
“Many generous, fun, semi-stupid, legendary moments have happened during Astros Championship Parades,” Stradley continued. “Hopefully, many more of those moments will happen in the years to come. Fans throw cans to people in championship parades all the time. That is a widely known thing. To get them to chug.”
Cruz certainly did not see the attack as a gesture of good will, slamming Arcidiacono as a “clown” with a “noodle for an arm.”
“I mean, listen, if he threw a 100-mile-an-hour fastball, I might be in a very different condition,” Cruz joked at the time.
Arcidiacono released a statement apologizing to Cruz, asking for “grace.”
He “apologizes for how his actions alarmed Senator Cruz, his family, and his security detail and put a damper on an otherwise beautiful celebration for millions of Houstonians,” according to the statement. “With this fuller context, we ask for grace and hope Senator Cruz declines to maintain charges.”