CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. —
Jurors have heard opening statements in a civil lawsuit that accuses white nationalists of conspiring to commit violence at the “Unite the Right” demonstrations in Charlottesville in 2017.
A lead attorney for nine people who are suing, claiming physical and emotional injuries, told the jury that the white nationalists planned the violence for months ahead of the rally.
But a lawyer for rally organizer Jason Kessler told the jury that the online communications relied on by the plaintiffs’ lawyers are protected by the First Amendment.
Hundreds of white nationalists descended on Charlottesville Aug. 11-12, 2017, ostensibly to protest city plans to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.