A political blogger finds himself behind bars this weekend.

Political blogger Clayton Kelly was arrested Thursday for exploiting a vulnerable adult and illegally and improperly obtaining a photo of her without her consent for his own benefit, according to the Madison Police Department.

Donald Clark, an attorney for Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Mississippi, and his wife Rose, told a local paper that the woman in question is Rose, saying the Cochrans’ “privacy and dignity have been violated.” Rose Cochran suffers from dementia and has lived at St. Catherine’s Village, the nursing home where Thursday’s incident took place, for 14 years now, according to The Clarion-Ledger.

“I have been fortunate to have a wonderful family, and like so many families, we are deeply affected by my wife’s serious, long-term illness, that we consider to be a very private family matter. We will continue doing everything we can to protect my wife’s safety and security,” said Cochran in a statement obtained by The Clarion-Ledger, a local paper.

Police say Kelly broke into the facility and took the picture by Rose Cochran’s bedside. The photo surfaced in a political attack ad on YouTube that aimed to smear Cochran, according to The Clarion-Ledger. The ad was removed within hours of being posted, according to the newspaper.

Kelly, a 28-year old Madison, Mississippi, resident, has a host of social platforms that cover politics and often attacks the senior senator.

But the video, like the majority of Kelly’s material, also supported Cochran’s opponent in the Republican primary — and that’s where things get complicated.

Chris McDaniel is a lawyer, radio commentator, and Mississippi state senator. With tea party support and endorsements from Club for Growth and Sarah Palin, he is challenging Cochran, and the race has been heated, with plenty of name-calling.

When the incident first came to light, McDaniel’s campaign distanced the candidate from Kelly, saying he was neither a volunteer nor a member of the campaign.

“I’ve reached out to Senator Cochran directly to express my abhorrence for the reprehensible actions of this individual. This criminal act is deeply offensive and my team and I categorically reject such appalling behavior. My thoughts and prayers are with Senator Cochran and his family,” McDaniel said in a statement. “Politics is about the exchange of ideas and this type of action has no place in politics whatsoever and will not be tolerated.”

Questions started to arise, however, when members of Cochran’s staff suggested that a McDaniel staffer apologized to a Cochran staffer before the police report was even released, according to The Clarion-Ledger. The implication was clear: McDaniel’s team must have worked with Kelly if they knew about his arrest before the news broke.
McDaniel’s team was quick to fire back.

“The McDaniel campaign found out about the break in when a local political blog posted about it at 11:40 p.m. last night. Senator McDaniel has denounced the break-in and called Senator Cochran to extend his condolences. It is unconscionable for the Cochran campaign and the liberal media to use the act of a sick individual to lob despicable accusations,” said Noel Fritch, a campaign spokesman.

So far, there has been no tangible evidence that links the campaign directly to Kelly.

Kelly is being held at Madison County Detention Center, with bond set at $100,000.