Posts tagged with "White nationalist"

Jury in Charlottesville ‘Unite the Right’ rally trial finds leaders liable for more than $25 million

November 25, 2021

A federal jury in Virginia awarded victims of violence stemming from a 2017 rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, more than $25 million on Tuesday, November 23, after finding prominent white-supremacist leaders and groups liable under state law for injuries suffered during a torchlight march and Unite the Right event, reports The Wall Street Journal.

The jury deadlocked on two federal conspiracy counts.

The events on August 11 and August 12, 2017, were attended by hundreds of members of white-nationalist, neo-Nazi and militia groups from around the nation. Throughout the weekend, violent clashes with counter-protesters left dozens injured and one woman dead, after a white-nationalist demonstrator drove his car into a crowd.

The lawsuit was filed in October 2017 by several people who were injured that weekend. The plaintiffs used a Reconstruction-Era law to attempt to hold liable the leaders and organizers who planned the violence and others who carried it out.

Among the individual and organizational defendants found liable were Jason Kessler, the primary organizer of the Unite the Right rally; Richard B. Spencer, considered a founder of the insurgent white-supremacist movement known as the alt-right; and James Fields Jr., who was sentenced to life in prison for killing a woman when he drove into a crowd of counter-protesters.

The jury also held responsible several other white-supremacist groups whose members promoted and participated in the rallies, including the National Socialist Movement, Vanguard America, and League of the South.

Amy Spitalnick, executive director of Integrity First for America, a nonprofit civil-rights organization funding the lawsuit, said the plaintiffs sought to recover enough money to bankrupt those at the center of the movement

“These judgments underscore the major financial, legal, and operational consequences for violent hate,” she said Tuesday.

The lawsuit sought compensatory damages between $7 million and $10 million for the four plaintiffs who were hit by the car and between $3 million and $5 million for the other plaintiffs for trauma they suffered, as well as unspecified punitive damages.

Throughout the monthlong trial, jurors heard testimony from at least two dozen witnesses, including many of the defendants.

The two counts that the jury deadlocked on used a Reconstruction Era law—the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871—which allows victims of racially-motivated violence to sue the people who conspired to attack them.

Jurors deliberated for nearly three days before returning the verdict Tuesday afternoon, holding all defendants responsible for conspiracy under Virginia state law.

The jury also found Fields liable for claims of assault or battery, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. On those counts, jurors awarded the plaintiffs $13.5 million in damages, including $12 million in punitive damages.

Co-lead counsels for the plaintiffs, Roberta Kaplan and Karen Dunn, said, in a statement Tuesday, “The laws of this country will not tolerate the use of violence to deprive racial and religious minorities of the basic right we all share to live as free and equal citizens.”

Research contact: @WSJ

GOP lawmaker’s family calls him out over insurrection in scathing ad to be shown on Fox News

April 5, 2021

Three siblings of Representative Paul Gosar (R-Arizona)—Jennifer, David, and Tim—say in a 60-second advertising spot that he’s one the key instigators of the deadly January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol carried out by pro-Trump insurrectionists  and they want him held accountable, HuffPost reports.

“He should have criminal consequences,” one of his brothers, Tim Gosar, said in a video from the conservative group Republican Accountability Project. “And if he’s found guilty, he should go to jail.”

In the ad, two of Gosar’s brothers and one of his sisters claim that the Arizona legislator helped spread false conspiracy theories after the election; and worked with one of the key organizers of the January  6 “Stop the Steal” rally, which turned into an attack on the Capitol.

“There is no one member of Congress more responsible for the attack on the Capitol than Congressman Paul Gosar,” one of his sisters, Jennifer Gosar, said in the ad, which will run this week on Fox News in Gosar’s district; as well as in Flagstaff, where he lives, but which is not part of his district:

The three siblings featured in the video—posted to YouTube on April 2, and already gleaning 25,000 views as of noon on the same date—suggest that he be expelled from Congress over his role in the insurrection and his attempts in the House to overturn the election results from multiple states.

Gosar’s siblings have spoken out against him in the past. In 2018, six of his brothers and sisters united to endorse his opponent, notes HuffPost..

“It would be difficult to see my brother as anything but a racist,” one of his sisters, Grace Gosar, said in a video.

Since then, the congressman has done little to change that impression: Gosar spoke at a white nationalist event in Florida earlier this year and last month he tweeted a message with the motto of a white nationalist organization.

The Republican Accountability Project—which has been calling out enablers of former President Donald Trump’s election lies by name—also created an online feature to allow voters to see if their lawmakers tried to overturn the election results and make a pledge not to support anyone who did.

Research contact: @HuffPost

Haters are outnumbered at ‘Unite the Right 2’ DC rally

August 14, 2018

The organizers expected as many as 400 people to attend the far right, white nationalist/neo-Nazi demonstration billed as Unite the Right 2 in Washington, D.C., on August 11—however they were way outnumbered by the crowd who showed up to protest bigotry and defend diversity, according to a report by Slate.

A small group of about 20 white supremacists—led by Jason Kessler, who also organized the Unite the Right rally last year in Charlottesville—traveled into Washington, D.C. via subway. When they emerged, counterprotestors were waiting for them—shouting, “Go home!” and “You’re not welcome here!”

While the white supremacists had a police escort and their opponents did not, many white nationalists left the rally early—disappointed by the lack of support and drowned out by the chanting of DC Unite Against Hate and about 40 other anti-racism groups, who gathered in a force of nearly 1,000 people to take a stand at the demonstration.

Other neo-Nazis simply did not show up. Kessler told CNN that he blamed the low turnout on logistical issues and confusion regarding the group’s transportation—a claim echoed by at least two men who spoke to reporters. “People are scared to come out after what happened last year,” one of the men added.

“Our message is to let everyone know we support each other,” Maurice Cook, a co-organizer for the March for Racial Justice, told the Washington, D.C. ABC-TV News affiliate, WJLA, where his group gathered in a “United Against Hate” counterprotest in Freedom Plaza.

Kaitlin Moore, 28, of Frederick, Maryland, told CNN she was participating in counterprotests in Lafayette Square to “show this is not okay.”

In a tweet on Saturday morning, President Donald Trump wrote, “We must come together as a nation.I condemn all types of racism and acts of violence. Peace to ALL Americans!”

According to CNN, “It was a departure from his comments a year ago, when he said there were ‘very fine people’ on both sides of the conflict in Charlottesville.”

Research contact@dpoliti