Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is calling on the Justice Department to investigate the driver of a car that plowed through a crowd of protesters in Charlottesville, Va. on Saturday, an act which the Republican is calling domestic terrorism.
“Having watched the horrifying video of the car deliberately crashing into a crowd of protesters, I urge the Department of Justice to immediately investigate and prosecute this grotesque act of domestic terrorism,” Cruz said in a statement shortly after the driver was identified as 20-year-old James Alex Fields Jr.
Fields, who is from Maumee, Ohio, allegedly drove his 2010 Dodge Challenger through a group of counter-protesters gathered in Charlottesville to demonstrate against thousands of white nationalists and neo-Nazis who were holding a rally to protest the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue in a local park.
A 32-year-old woman was killed and at least 19 others were injured in the vehicle attack. Graphic video of the incident appears to show Fields driving through a swarm of people before slamming into another vehicle. A group of people then swarmed on Fields’ vehicle before he slammed the car in reverse and sped back down the road.
Fields has been charged with second-degree murder in the case.
Little is known about Fields. He is a registered Republican, and a social media posting from one of his family members indicates that Fields entered the military in 2015. The family member stated that he was headed to boot camp. It is unclear if Fields is on active duty.
Cruz pulled no punches in his statement.
“The Nazis, the KKK, and white supremacists are repulsive and evil, and all of us have a moral obligation to speak out against the lies, bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hatred that they propagate,” he said.
“These bigots want to tear our country apart, but they will fail. America is far better than this.”