Charlottesville victim's death an act of terror, friends say

Claudine Rigal
Août 15, 2017

Saturday's auto rampage killed 32-year-old Heather Heyer, who was among the crowd of counter-protesters.

"I don't really talk to him about his political views, so I don't really understand what the rally was about or anything".

The judge informed Fields that he was charged with a number of felonies, including murder and malicious wounding.

Fields told Judge Robert Downer that he could not afford a lawyer.

Fields was arrested Saturday and has been charged with second-degree murder.

Hours later, US President Donald Trump said those who commit violence "in the name of bigotry" would be held accountable.

He said that Fields confessed to reading and enjoying Mein Kampf, Hitler's 1925 autobiography, a book that is considered a touchstone for white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups.

Fields answered in short sentences as Downer ran quickly through the hearing.

Asked if he had any ties to the community in Charlottesville, Fields, staring into the camera, replied: "No, sir".

In high school, Fields was an "average" student, but with a keen interest in military history, Hitler, and Nazi Germany, said Weimer, who said he was Fields' social studies teacher in his junior and senior years at Randall K Cooper high school in the U.S. state of Kentucky.

His former history teacher, Derek Weimer, also told several news outlets about Fields' fascination with Hitler. "It would start to creep out".

The group has denied any association with the suspect.

As the hearing adjourned and the reporters poured on to the street outside, Matthew Heimbach, the IN leader of the white nationalist group the Traditional Workers party, held an impromptu press conference.

The FBI field office in Richmond and the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Western District of Virginia said late Saturday that they have opened a civil rights investigation into the deadly vehicle crash.

Weimer said Fields left school for a while, and when he came back he was quieter about politics until his senior year, when politicians started to declare their candidacy for the 2016 presidential race. "Trump's not a supremacist", she said. Trump's proposal to build a border wall with Mexico was particularly appealing to Fields, Weimer said.

Two of Fields' classmates told ABC News about a trip to Europe that a group of students took after graduation in 2015, when they visited the Dachau concentration camp in Germany.

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