James Alex Fields Jr. is not an alt-right marcher.
James Alex Fields Jr. is not a right-wing protester.
James Alex Fields Jr. is not just a white nationalist.
James Alex Fields Jr. is a radical white terrorism suspect.
After Fields allegedly slammed a car into a crowd of anti-racism protesters, a 32-year-old woman, who was crossing the street, died at the scene. At least 19 other people were injured.
The incident occurred amid a radical white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, during which white supremacists — representing the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazis and other groups — marched with torches and chanted slogans like “blood and soil,” “one people,” “one nation” and “end immigration.”
As counter-protesters gathered to raise their voices against hate speech, violence erupted.
After at least an hour of clashes between the two groups, a silver sedan, allegedly belonging to Fields, plowed into a group of counter-protesters before reversing along the same street.
Video on social media and Reuters photographs showed the vehicle hit a large crowd of people, sending some flying into the air.
Fields’ alleged actions were driven by a radical extremist ideology targeted against a specific group of people. While President Donald Trump might be hesitant to say it, what Fields allegedly committed should be called what it really is: radical white terrorism.
Here’s what we know about Fields:
He is 20 years old, hails from Maumee, Ohio, and traveled to Charlottesville for the Unite the Right rally, according to his mother’s statement to the Toldeo Blade.
"I try to stay out of his political views. I don't get too involved,” Samantha Bloom told the newspaper, adding said her son had told her he was heading to an "alt-right" rally in Virginia.
"I told him to be careful," she said before breaking down in tears. "If they are going to rally, to make sure he is doing it peacefully."
As seen in a photo posted by Bloom on Facebook in August 2015, she can be seen standing with Fields with text stating her son "just left for boot camp."
In another photo, Fields posed for a selfie while wearing an Army lanyard. However, it’s not yet clear if he served in the military.
Fields’ father was killed by a drunk driver a few months after he was born, an uncle told The Washington Post under the condition of anonymity.
The suspect registered as a Republican in 2016, as per public records reviewed by The Daily Beast.
Oren Segal, director of the Anti-Defamation League, shared a photo on Twitter purportedly featuring Fields, who can be seen standing with members of Vanguard America, a white supremacist group based in Charlottesville.
However, Vanguard America released a statement, saying Fields is not a member:
An official statement regarding today's incidents and the individual in question. pic.twitter.com/wBaERomHEZ— Vanguard America (@VanguardAm) August 13, 2017
New York Daily News reports “Fields’ Facebook page was peppered with similar alt-right and Nazi imagery — such as Hitler’s baby photo; a tourist shot of the Reichstag in Berlin; and cartoon of Pepe the Frog, the anthropomorphic frog hijacked by right-wing groups — before it was deactivated.”
This story will be updated as more details emerge.
For now, Fields is charged with “second-degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding and failing to stop at an accident that resulted in a death,” according to Col. Martin Kumer, the superintendent of Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail.
Banner/Thumbnail Credit: Charlottesville Police Department/Handout via Reuters