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Report: Maine Democrat running for US Senate arrested in Texas

Zak Ringlestein's arrest (Courtesy: Zak Ringlestein)

MCALLEN, TX (WGME) -- Maine’s Democratic US Senate candidate Zak Ringlestein was arrested Friday outside a detention center in McAllan, Texas, which is housing children who have been separated from their parents after being caught crossing the border illegally.

His campaign says the 31-year-old from Yarmouth went to Texas to deliver blankets, books, toys, food, and water to children, who Ringlestein says were imprisoned by the Trump administration.

A video posted on Facebook shows Ringelstein talking to officers and asking for permission to enter the detention center to deliver the items.

He was repeatedly told no, and was arrested for apparently refusing to leave.

The video shows him being handcuffed and taken into custody.

At this time, the specific charges are not known.

His campaign says they have had no communication with him since his arrest around 9:30 a.m. EST.

Ringelstein is currently running for the Senate seat currently held by Senator Angus King.

Senator King told CBS 13 Friday morning that he has no comment on Ringlestein's arrest, but he said the policy of locking up children, and now families, is cruel and wrong.

"What really frosted me was when they said, 'Well, maybe if we do this the Democrats will come and negotiate'. We don't put kids in cages as hostages for negotiation. That's just wrong. And that's the way I see it. And what the president did the other day helps, but we're still locking people up,” Senator King said.

Under mounting pressure, President Donald Trump signed an executive order temporarily ending the policy of separating children from their parents.

The Border Patrol is expected to hold a press conference on the arrest later Friday afternoon.

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