White nationalist says he’ll turn himself in

White nationalist demonstrators clash with counter demonstrators at the entrance to Lee Park in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017. Gov. Terry McAuliffe declared a state of emergency and police dressed in riot gear ordered people to disperse after chaotic violent clashes between white nationalists and counter protestors. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — A white nationalist wanted for crimes authorities say were committed on the campus of the University of Virginia a day before a deadly rally has said he will turn himself in to authorities.

University of Virginia police say Christopher Cantwell of Keene, New Hampshire, is wanted on three felony charges: two counts of the illegal use of tear gas or other gases and one count of malicious bodily injury with a “caustic substance,” explosive or fire.

Contacted Tuesday by The Associated Press, Cantwell acknowledged he had pepper-sprayed a counter demonstrator during an Aug. 11 protest but insisted he was defending himself, saying he did it “because my only other option was knocking out his teeth.”

Cantwell also said he had been trying for days to find out about whether he had outstanding warrants. When the police issued a statement, Cantwell said he was “convinced” that he is wanted and would turn himself in.

He would not say Tuesday evening where or exactly when that would happen, only that it would be done in the “most appropriate and safe manner possible.” He said it would occur in the next 24 hours, “likely much sooner than that,” and that he looked forward to his day in court.

Also Tuesday, the city council in Charlottesville, Virginia, voted to drape two Confederate statues in black fabric during a chaotic meeting packed with irate residents who screamed and cursed at councilors over the city’s response to the white nationalist rally.

The council meeting was the first since the “Unite the Right” event, which was believed to be the largest gathering of white nationalists in a decade. The demonstrators arrived in Charlottesville partly to protest the city council’s vote to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

Charlottesville resident Heather Heyer, 32, was killed when a car slammed into a crowd protesting the rally. James Alex Fields Jr., 20, has been charged in the death.

STORIES OTHERS ARE CLICKING ON-

> BACK TO TOP STORIES

WFLA.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s