• Friday , 18 Aug 2017
Published : 13 Aug 2017, 10:30:24 | Updated : 13 Aug 2017, 11:38:40AA-A+
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'Go home ... shame on you': Virginia governor to white nationalists

Online Desk
One person was killed and 19 were hurt when a speeding car slammed into a throng of counterprotesters in Charlottesville, where a "Unite the Right" rally of white nationalist and other right-wing groups had been scheduled take place, the city tweeted on its verified account.


A 32-year-old woman was killed while walking across the street, Charlottesville Police Chief Al Thomas said. Police were still in the process of notifying her family.


Two Virginia State Patrol troopers were killed in a helicopter crash while "assisting public safety resources with the ongoing situation in Charlottesville," the agency said in a news release. The pilot, Lt. H. Jay Cullen, 48, and Trooper Berke M.M. Bates, who would have turned 41 on Sunday, died in the crash, reports CNN.


Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe had a pointed message for the right-wing groups that flocked to Charlottesville on Saturday: "Go home. ... You are not wanted in this great commonwealth. Shame on you."


In addition to the one death and 19 injuries in the car-ramming incident, the city said there were at least 15 other injuries associated with the scheduled rally.


Federal authorities said a civil rights investigation into the deadly crash was opened hours after it happened.


Attorney General Jeff Sessions said U.S. Attorney Rick Mountcastle is leading the investigation and has the full support of the Deparment of Justice.


"The violence and deaths in Charlottesville strike at the heart of American law and justice. When such actions arise from racial bigotry and hatred, they betray our core values and cannot be tolerated," Sessions said in a statement. "Justice will prevail."


"The FBI will collect all available facts and evidence, and as this is an ongoing investigation we are not able to comment further at this time," said a statement from the Richmond, Virginia FBI field office.


"I am heartbroken that a life has been lost here. I urge all people of good will -- go home," Mayor Mike Signer wrote on Twitter.


Virginia's governor had earlier declared an emergency, and police worked to disperse hundreds of protesters in the college town after clashes broke out ahead of the rally's scheduled noon ET start.


Fistfights and screaming matches erupted Saturday, barely 12 hours after a scuffle Friday night at the nearby University of Virginia between torch-bearing demonstrators and counterprotesters.


Saturday's rally was the latest event drawing white nationalists and right-wing activists from across the country to this Democratic-voting town -- a development precipitated by the city's decision to remove symbols of its Confederate past.


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