Woman killed at white nationalist political rally in Virginia
Police arrest Ohio man
By Frederick H. Lowe
Police today arrested the driver of a car that plowed into two parked cars at a high-rate of speed setting off a chain-reaction accident that killed a 32-year-old woman and injured 19 others who were protesting a “Unite the Right” rally organized by members of the Klu Klux Klan, Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va.
A silver 2010 Dodge with tinted windows rear-ended the cars that crashed into anti-white supremacist protestors at a pedestrian mall in downtown Charlottesville. The driver backed up and sped away. Police chased after the car, apprehended and arrested the driver.
Al Thomas, Charlottesville’s police chief, declined to identify the woman until her next of kin has been notified. The woman was crossing the street when she was killed, Thomas said. It isn’t known if she was member of the counter-demonstrators.
Police identified the car’s driver as James Alex Fields Jr., 20, a registered Republican from Maumee, Ohio, according to Facebook. Maumee is near Toledo. Police charged Fields with second-degree murder. He will be arraigned Monday in the Charlottesville General District Court.
The crash occurred after hundreds of counter protestors, including members of Black Lives Matter and anti-fascist groups, battled Nazis, KKK members and white supremacists armed with rifles, guns, batons, rocks, fists, angry shouts and extended middle fingers at Emancipation Park, formerly Robert E. Lee Park. The Alt Right protestors carried Confederate flags, wore Nazi arm bands and “Make America Great Again” baseball caps, a trademark of President Donald Trump.
City council members had voted earlier to remove a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, which set the table for last night’s torch march by white supremacists chanting ‘blood and soil’ and today’s violent clash. The slogan “blood and soil” was first used by the agricultural department of the Nazi Party during Adolph Hitler’s dictatorship.
Right wingers claimed the statue’s removal would take away their heritage.
Both the counter protestors and the white supremacists wore helmets.
David Duke, a former leader of the KKK, and a supporter of President Trump, said members of the right attended the rally — the largest white supremacist gathering in decades — because President Donald Trump said he was going to “take this country back.” Duke reminded Trump that it was white people who elected him.
In a brief message delivered from Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, NJ, Trump did not say much about the violence by the white nationalists nor did he condemn white supremacy. In contrast, several newscasters and some Republican politicians called the car crash an act of terrorism. Trump was roundly criticized from all sides for not denouncing white supremacy.
In a related matter, two Virginia state troopers, who were observing the rally, were killed when the helicopter they were flying in crashed.
NFL suspends Dallas running back
The National Football League has suspended Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott for six regular season games for domestic violence against his former girlfriend.
The 22-year-old Elliott said the decision disappointed him and that he would appeal it.
“I am both surprised and disappointed by the NFL’s decision today, and I strongly disagree with the League’s findings,” Elliott said in a statement. He won’t be able to make his season debut until Oct. 29 against the Washington Redskins.
Wrongfully convicted man seeks compensation
Anthony Ray Hinton, who was released from death row in 2015, after serving 30 years in
prison for two murders he didn’t commit, is still seeking compensation from Alabama authorities for his unlawful incarceration.
Alabama State Senator Paul Bussman sponsored legislation that would pay Hinton $500,000 in state funds but the legislation never got out of committee.
The 60-year-old Hinton was one of the longest-serving death row prisoners in Alabama history and one of the longest-serving condemned prisoners to be freed after presenting evidence of innocence, according to Equal Justice Initiative, which is based in Montgomery, Ala.