Published: Sat, December 08, 2018

Virginia city hopes to heal after man's murder conviction

Virginia city hopes to heal after man's murder conviction

The deadly attack in the early afternoon of August 12, 2017 culminated a dark 24 hours in this quiet college town.

The night before, the Unite the Right protesters had staged a torch-lit march through the nearby University of Virginia campus, chanting racist and anti-Semitic slogans.

Fields is the face of violent white supremacy in our country.

Afterward, Trump inflamed tensions even further when he said "both sides" were to blame, a comment some saw as a refusal to condemn racism. The witness said he couldn't recall what Fields said.

Fields, a resident of Maumee, Ohio, was photographed hours before the vehicle attack carrying a shield with the emblem of a far-right hate group.

They showed video and presented witnesses testifying that there was no one around Fields' auto when he slowly backed it up the street and then raced it forward down the hill into the unsuspecting crowd. Prosecutor Nina-Alice Antony said Fields was angry over the fighting going on and posted on Instagram before the rally.

Three months before the incident, Fields also posted a meme on Instagram, showing an image of a crowd of people being hit by a vehicle. She said he believed a group of protesters behind him was about to swarm his auto, although no evidence was presented to support that.

The jury was also shown texts that Fields sent his mother up to and during the rally. He shared a photo of Adolf Hitler with the message: "We're not the one (sic) who need to be careful".

"He thought people were after him", another defense attorney, Denise Lunsford, told CNN.

"You can't do that based on the fact that he holds extreme right-wing views", she said.

The jury had the option of convicting Fields on lesser charges, but found he maliciously, willfully and deliberately drove into the crowd near 4th and Water streets.

The guilty verdict for Fields is not the end of his legal troubles.

Fields could also face the death penalty if he is tried and found guilty of separate federal hate crime charges. The physical and psychic injuries are slow to fade.

Al Bowie, who was injured in the attack, told reporters that she was ecstatic. "Stonewall" Jackson from downtown parks.

"They will not replace us!"

Over the course of the trial prosecutor Nina-Alice Antony depicted Fields as an angry white nationalist who acted with hate and violence on August 12, 2017 when he sped into unsuspecting counterdemonstrators after the Unite the Right rally was shut down by authorities. "This trial acutely and minutely relived that weekend, so that has been very hard for many folks".

A handful of Charlottesville residents filed a civil lawsuit against the organizers of the rally under the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871. And the fate of the two Confederate statues - the original spark for the violence of 2017 - is scheduled to be decided in a court here in January.

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