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Car rams Charlottesville crowd after protests: What we know now

A car crashed into a group of demonstrators Saturday in Charlottesville, Va., killing at least one person and injuring 19, as white supremacists and counter protesters clashed in the streets.

Early in the day, violence had broken out as the groups that planned the “Unite the Right” rally were met with counter protesters. After the rally, a car plowed into a crowd and a state police helicopter crashed outside the city.

Here’s what we know now:

Who was killed?

A 32-year-old woman was killed in the car crash, officials said.

Lt. Jay Cullen, 48, of Midlothian, Va. and Trooper-Pilot Berke Bates, 40, of Quinton, Va. were killed in a helicopter crash outside the city, Virginia State Police said. Officials said the crash was linked to the rally but did not clarify how. President Trump tweeted his condolence to “the families & fellow officers of the VA State Police who died.”

Were others injured?

Thirty-five people were injured in clashes between opposing groups and in the car crash. At least nineteen were injured in the crash alone. Charlottesville police chief Al Thomas said the injuries ranged from life-threatening to minor.

Where is the driver now?

The driver has been taken into custody, Virginia Secretary of Public Safety Brian Moran said. Albermarle County Regional Jail officials identified the suspect as 20-year-old Alex Fields, of Ohio.

Thomas said the driver will be charged with criminal homicide.

White supremacist, alt-right, neo-Nazi and pro-Confederate groups were protesting the planned removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee in Emancipation Park.

Who organized the rally?

One of the main organizers was right-wing blogger Jason Kessler, who filed a lawsuit against the city. Charlottesville mayor Mike Signer opposed holding the rally near the Lee monument.

Late Friday, U.S. District Judge Glen Conrad ruled that the groups could hold hold the rally in the park.

Matthew Heimbach, an Indiana resident who has risen to prominence in the white nationalist movement, was also a key figure. Heimbach ordered his followers to push down the metal police barricades that cut the park into separate zones

What was President Trump’s response?

President Trump denounced the violence, declaring that the “hatred and division must stop.”

“I condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of violence and bigotry on many sides,” he added.

He also tweeted condolences to the families of those killed after the rally.


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