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Offbeat Charlottesville organizers tell judge they were acting in self-defense at deadly rally

02:37  25 may  2018
02:37  25 may  2018 Source:   thehill.com

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But Charlottesville General District Judge Robert Downer Jr. dismissed the charges against Harris, 20, siding with Black Lives Matter activists who say he was acting in self - defense as a group of white supremacists attacked him and his friends.

A white man from Arkansas was found guilty on Tuesday in the brutal beating of a black man at last year’s deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville , Virginia. Goodwin claimed he acted in self defense , but the city’s assistant commonwealth’s attorney, Nina-Alice Antony, said it was Goodwin

a group of people standing in front of a crowd © Provided by The Hill

White supremacists involved in the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Va., are asking a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit alleging that they planned and encouraged the violence that erupted at the August 2017 protest.

Lawyers for the defendants argued Thursday that the white supremacists merely sought to defend themselves from violent counter-protesters.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs in the case, however, argue that the white supremacist groups sought to commit acts of violence from the outset.

According to BuzzFeed News, the plaintiffs plan on using leaked conversations between defendants, who include rally organizers, on the app Discord to show that they intended to spark violence.

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One such personality is Christopher Cantwell, one of the rally 's co- organizers who was featured on Stephen Colbert's show. All of which he said was done in self - defense . Now, following the deadly rally , authorities have allegedly issued a warrant for his arrest.

Whether the chats will convince a judge that the planners aimed to incite violence, they certainly The Unite the Right rally organizers are using the First Amendment as a defense . White supremacists behind shields during the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville , Virginia, on August 12, 2017.

"It's become clear that part of their defense in the case was going to be, 'This is all self-defense,'' Karen Dunn, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, told reporters, according to BuzzFeed. "Well, first of all, there are chats that directly contradict that."

It's not clear when the judge in the case will issue a decision on whether to dismiss the lawsuit.

The lawsuit was filed months after the Charlottesville rally, which turned deadly when a white supremacist allegedly rammed a car through a crowd of counter-protesters, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer and injuring more than 30 others.

Thousands march across NYC's Brooklyn Bridge in gun protest .
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