Let’s be honest about one thing, right off the bat: This vehicular terrorist not going to get off on these hate-crime and murder charges. But man, do you ever have to admire his chutzpah:
James Alex Fields Jr., the Ohio man accused of killing Heather Heyer during last year’s white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, plans to argue he was acting in self-defense when he drove his car into a crowd of counterprotesters.
Fields faces 10 state charges, among them first-degree murder and malicious wounding, after authorities said he plowed his car into a crowd of people protesting a Unite the Right rally on Aug. 12, 2017. Dozens of people were injured. Heyer, 32, a legal assistant, was killed.
As jury selection in the trial got underway Monday, Fields’ attorney John Hill told a group of prospective jurors evidence will show that Fields “thought he was acting in self-defense.”
Fields, 21, has also been charged with 30 federal counts of hate crimes, which could result in the death penalty.
So. Why did I say he had chutzpah? Because his “thought he was acting in self-defence” claim doesn’t hold water in light of the facts:
Federal prosecutors described Fields as a Nazi sympathizer who has advocated violence against blacks and Jews on social media and who participated in chants promoting white supremacy and racist views during the Unite the Right rally, held to protest the planned removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.
The indictment said that after the rally was dispersed, Fields drove to where the counterprotest was taking place in downtown Charlottesville and backed up to the top of a hill.
“Fields then rapidly accelerated, ran through a stop sign and across a raised pedestrian mall, and drove directly into the crowd, striking numerous individuals, killing Heather Heyer, and injuring many others,” the indictment said. “Fields’ vehicle stopped only when it struck another vehicle … He then rapidly reversed his vehicle and fled the scene.”
There is simply no way that he was “defending himself” against ANYTHING. No one was attacking him. He was the aggressor, and the crowd of people he deliberately ran into were the victims. And one of them died. Not of heart disease, as the flying monkeys of the far right claim, but of injuries sustained when he deliberately plowed into her. Even the videographer who caught it all on his cellphone says it was neither defensive nor accidental, but utterly deliberate.
And I, for one, can’t wait to hear this terrorist pronounced guilty.