By Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Brian M. Rosenthal
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The city of Charlottesville was engulfed by violence Saturday as white nationalists and counter protesters clashed in one of the bloodiest fights to date over the removal of Confederate monuments across the South.
White nationalists had long planned a demonstration over the city’s decision to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee. But the rally quickly exploded into racial taunting, shoving, and outright brawling, prompting the governor to declare a state of emergency and the National Guard to join police in clearing the area.
Those skirmishes mostly resulted in cuts and bruises. But after the rally at a city park was dispersed, a car bearing Ohio license plates plowed into a crowd near the city’s downtown mall killing a 32-year-old woman. Some 34 others were injured; at least 19 in the crash, according to a spokeswoman for the University of Virginia Medical Center.
Colonel Martin Kumer, the superintendent of the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail, confirmed Saturday evening that an Ohio man, James Alex Fields Jr., 20, of Maumee, had been arrested and charged with second-degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding, and failing to stop at the scene of a crash that resulted in a death. The authorities declined to say publicly that Fields was the driver of the car that plowed into the crowd.
Source: New York Time/www.bostonglobe.com