Injured Bystanders Sue Charlottesville Attacker, Alt Right Leaders
Two individuals who were injured in Saturday’s deadly terrorist attack in Charlottesville, Va., have brought a civil suit against James Alex Fields Jr. and a constellation of alt-right leaders, seeking millions in damages.
Tadrint and Micah Washington brought the action in Charlottesville Circuit Court Tuesday. Both were injured when Fields plowed his car into a crowd of anti-racist demonstrators, killing one and injuring a dozen.
The pair was driving on 4th Street in downtown Charlottesville, the scene of Fields’ attack, and forced to stop their car due to street congestion attending the anti-racism protest. When Fields drove his Dodge Challenger into the protest, he slammed into the back of the Washington’s car, propelling it further into the crowd.
“The crash caused plaintiffs to slam into the dashboard and windshield, leaving them with serious injuries to their head and extremities,” the complaint reads. They were subsequently removed from their car by law enforcement and treated at the University of Virginia Medical Center.
The suit names Fields as well as various alt-right leaders as defendants. Other defendants include Richard Spencer, a white nationalist and president of the National Policy Institute, David Duke, a perennial white supremacist political candidate and activist, and The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi website, among others. They are each described as “racist and hateful” in the complaint.
The plaintiffs are represented by the Miller Firm in Orange, Va.
The suit argues that alt-right groups and activists who organized the rally are also liable for Fields’ actions, as they had a duty “to take direct actions and measures to assure that the rally would be safe for attendees and residents in the immediate area of the public gathering.”
It further alleges that the defendants directed and incited attendees to commit acts of violence, and conspired to engage in unlawful acts “for the purpose of instilling fear in the public and obtaining a reversal of the city’s decision to remove the Robert E. Lee statue.”
In total, the complaint brings eight counts against the defendants including assault and battery, civil conspiracy, and incitement to riot, among others.
Civil suits have proven an effective means by which to fracture hate groups in the past. The family of a slain black teenager, Michael Donald, secured a $7 million judgment against the United Klans of America in the 1980s, effectively bankrupting one of the country’s largest organized hate groups.
The Miller Firm and several defendants did not respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s inquiries by press time.
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