UPDATE: Rally organizer booed, pushed in Charlottesville

UPDATE: August 13

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) – The Latest on incidents related to violent clashes between white supremacist groups and counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, that left three dead (all times local)

2:40 p.m.

The man who organized a rally in Charlottesville that sparked violent clashes between white supremacist groups and counter-protesters tried to hold a news conference a day after the deadly event, but a crowd of several hundred booed him and forced him away from the lectern.

Jason Kessler is a blogger based in Charlottesville, and as he came out to speak Sunday afternoon near City Hall, he was surrounded by cameras and people. Some people chanted and made noises with drums and other instruments. Among the chants: “You’re wearing the wrong hood,” a reference to the Ku Klux Klan.

Kessler mimicked looking at his watch and indicated he’d wait to speak.

A few people approached, crossing the line of TV cameras.

One man pushed Kessler. A woman tackled him.

Kessler asked state troopers on the scene for help. Eventually they escorted him off. State police say troopers approached the area as the crowd got aggressive but made no arrests.

12:55 p.m.

A friend of the woman killed when a car rammed into a group of protesters in Charlottesville says she’s no different than a casualty of war.

Heather Heyer

Felicia Correa said Sunday that her friend Heather Heyer died standing up for people of color.

Correa says Heyer and other counterprotesters put their lives on the line to confront hateful bigotry. She says she doesn’t see the difference between Heyer or someone who died in the Sept. 11 attacks. She says the vehicle that plowed into a group of peaceful protesters was a terrorist attack as well.

Correa says she grew up with Heyer, who was 32. She says she was a sweet person. She has set up a fund to raise money for Heyer’s family.

12:30 p.m.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is calling on President Donald Trump to more strongly condemn the bigotry and violence that happened in Charlottesville, Virginia, this weekend.

Democrat McAuliffe told reporters at First Baptist Church in Charlottesville on Sunday that angry political rhetoric needs to stop.

He says the Republican president “needs to come out stronger” against the actions of white supremacists. The governor says “they are Nazis and they are here to hurt American citizens, and he needs to call them out for what they are, no question.”

McAuliffe spoke to Trump on Saturday about the violence in downtown Charlottesville. He says “twice I said to him we have to stop this hateful speech, this rhetoric.”

The governor says protesters were “emboldened to walk around our streets with weapons and to spew hatred.”

12:05 p.m.

The man accused of ramming a car into a crowd of protesters in Charlottesville was photographed that morning holding a shield with the emblem of a white supremacist group.

Vanguard America denies that James Alex Fields Jr. is a member of its group and says it handed out shields to anyone in attendance who wanted them. The Anti-Defamation League says Vanguard America believes the U.S. is an exclusively white nation, and uses propaganda to recruit young white men online and on college campuses. Vanguard America confirmed via Twitter account that members were in Charlottesville on Saturday morning, part of what’s believed to be the largest group of white nationalists to come together in a decade, to rally against plans to remove a Confederate statue. Hundreds of others came to protest against the racism.

In the photo, taken by the New York Daily News , Fields stands with a handful of men, all dressed similarly in the usual Vanguard America uniform of khakis and white polo shirts. The men hold white shields with a black-and-white logo of two axes. The Confederate statue of Robert E. Lee is in the background. The Daily News says the photo was taken about 10:30 a.m. Charlottesville officials say the car crashed into the crowd, killing one, at 1:42 p.m.

10:15 a.m.

Federal law enforcement authorities have started a civil rights investigation into a deadly car crash in Charlottesville that left one protester dead and several others injured.

The FBI said in a statement late Saturday that it is collecting facts and evidence in an ongoing investigation.

Heather Heyer died when a car rammed into a group of people who were protesting the presence of white supremacists who had gathered in the city for a rally.

The car’s driver, James Alex Fields Jr. was charged with second-degree murder and other counts. He could also face federal charges, depending on the outcome of the FBI’s investigation.

9:30 a.m.

Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer called the killing of a 32-year-old woman and the injury of others by a vehicle at a rally in the city a “terrorist attack with a car used as a weapon.”

He made the comments in an interview Sunday with NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Heather Heyer died when a car rammed into a group of people who were protesting the presence of white supremacists who had gathered in the city for a rally.

The car’s driver, James Alex Fields Jr. was charged with second-degree murder and other counts.

The rally’s purpose was to condemn a decision by the city to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

7:23 a.m.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe will visit two Charlottesville churches and speak to congregants following violent clashes in the city between white supremacist groups and counter-protesters that left three dead.

The governor’s office says in a release that Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam will join McAuliffe at both Sunday services.

McAuliffe and Northam are scheduled to visit Mount Zion First African Baptist Church and First Baptist Church.

Three were killed and dozens were injured amid what is believed to be the largest group of white nationalists to come together in a decade to protest the city’s decision to remove a Confederate monument. A car rammed into a crowd of protesters, killing a 32-year-old woman, and a state police helicopter crashed into the woods, leaving two troopers onboard dead.

President Donald Trump criticized the violence and called for a return to law and order. But his critics say his racially-tinged rhetoric has exacerbated the nation’s political tensions and emboldened racists.

2:21 a.m.

The mayor of Charlottesville blamed the nation’s intensifying political divisions for the violent clashes between white supremacist groups and counterprotesters that left three dead.

Mayor Michael Signer on Saturday bemoaned the “very sad and regrettable coarseness in our politics.”

Three were killed and dozens were injured amid what is believed to be the largest group of white nationalists to come together in a decade to protest the city’s decision to remove a Confederate monument. A car rammed into a crowd of protesters, killing a 32-year-old woman, and a state police helicopter crashed into the woods, leaving two troopers onboard dead.

President Donald Trump criticized the violence and called for a return to law and order. But his critics say his racially-tinged rhetoric has exacerbated the nation’s political tensions and emboldened racists.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

UPDATE: 8:00 p.m. August 12 

 (CNN)The suspect being held in a Virginia jail in connection with a deadly crash near a scheduled rally of white nationalists has been identified as James Alex Fields Jr., 20, of Maumee, Ohio, according to Superintendent Martin Kumer with the Albermarle-Charlottesville County Regional Jail.

Fields is being held on suspicion of second-degree murder, malicious wounding and failure to stop in an accident that resulted in death.

One person died and 19 were injured Saturday when a car rammed a crowd of counterprotesters gathered to oppose a “Unite the Right” rally of white nationalist and other right-wing groups.
Developing story – more to come

UPDATE 3:00pm:

A state official said the driver of a car that plowed into a group of marchers in Charlottesville is in police custody.

Virginia Secretary of Public Safety Brian Moran said the driver, a man, has been arrested.

Moran did not immediately provide a name of the driver.

Witnesses say a car plowed into a crowd of people who were protesting a rally, which was held by white nationalists who oppose the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee by the city of Charlottesville. Officials say one person was killed and at least 26 were treated at local hospitals.

UPDATE:  CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) – Hospital official says one dead, 19 injured after car plows into a group of protesters in downtown Charlottesville.

2 p.m.

Authorities are on the scene after a vehicle plowed into a group of people marching peacefully through downtown Charlottesville.

An Associated Press reporter saw at least one person on the ground receiving medical treatment immediately afterward the incident, which occurred approximately two hours after violent clashes between white nationalists and counter-protesters.

The nationalists were holding the rally to protest plans by the city of Charlottesville to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

There were several hundred protesters marching in a long line when the car drove into a group of them.

original story:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) – The Latest on the white nationalist rally being held in Charlottesville (all times local):

1:40 p.m.

President Donald Trump is tweeting about the violence that has erupted amid a white supremacist march in Virginia.

Trump tweeted Saturday that “we ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for.” He then wrote “There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets come together as one!”

The demonstrations began Friday in Charlottesville with white nationalists marching through town and while carrying lit torches. The demonstrators then clashed with counter-protesters.

Some of the white nationalists cited Trump’s victory as validation for their beliefs.

The White House was silent for hours about the clashes except for a solitary tweet from First Lady Melania Trump. The president has received previous criticism for being slow to condemn acts of hate done in his name.

___

1:35 p.m.

The organizer of a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville is encouraging attendees to leave town after authorities declared an unlawful assembly and police ordered people to disperse.

Right-wing blogger Jason Kessler organized Saturday’s rally to protest the city’s decision to remove a statue of confederate General Robert E. Lee.

Kessler told The Associated Press Saturday that he and other people who were going to speak at the event evacuated with security when police issued the order to disperse.

He says he wants rally attendees to leave town peacefully.

Richard Spencer is a prominent alt-right activist who was scheduled to speak. He says he’s also encouraging people to go home.

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) – The Latest on the white nationalist rally being held in Charlottesville (all times local):

12:50 p.m.

First Lady Melania Trump is calling for peace after violent clashes broke out at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville.

Trump said Saturday on Twitter: “Our country encourages freedom of speech, but let’s communicate w/o hate in our hearts. No good comes from violence.”

Hundreds of white nationalists and counter protesters faced off Saturday in downtown Charlottesville, with several violent clashes erupting.

It’s the latest confrontation in the city since it voted to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from a downtown park.

___

12:35 p.m.

The NHL’s Detroit Red Wings released a statement denouncing the use of their logo at the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, and saying they are considering legal action to stop it.

The team says it “vehemently” disagrees with and is not associated with the event. The Red Wings add they are “exploring every possible legal action as it pertains to the misuse of our logo in this disturbing demonstration.”

A Michigan-based white nationalist group called the Detroit Right Wings uses the Red Wings’ logo. The organization posted on its Twitter account that members had arrived in Charlottesville.

___

12:25 p.m.

Virginia’s governor has declared a state of emergency in response to a white nationalist rally that is expected to draw up to 6,000 people.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe said via his Twitter account on Saturday morning that the declaration was made in order “to aid state response to violence” at the rally in Charlottesville, about 100 miles outside of Washington, D.C.

It’s the latest confrontation in the city since it voted earlier this year to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from a downtown park.

The city’s manager also declared a local emergency and police ordered people to disperse from the area around the statue after several violent clashes broke out.

___

Hundreds of people are facing off in Charlottesville ahead of a white nationalist rally planned in the Virginia city’s downtown.

Rally supporters and counter-protesters screamed, chanted, threw punches, hurled water bottles and unleashed chemical sprays on each other Saturday morning.

Men dressed in militia uniforms were carrying shields and openly carrying long guns.

Right-wing blogger Jason Kessler planned what he called a “pro-white” rally to protest Charlottesville’s decision to remove a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee from a city park. Thousands of people are expected to pack the area.

There were also fights Friday night, when hundreds of white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus carrying torches.

A university spokesman said one person was arrested and several people were injured.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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