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Charlottesville Judge Sentences Blogger Jason Kessler

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

A Charlottesville-based blogger returned to court Monday morning to learn his punishment.

Jason Kessler appeared in Charlottesville General District Court Monday, May 8, to be sentenced on a misdemeanor charge of assault.

The charge stems from an incident that occurred on the Downtown Mall on Sunday, January 22. Kessler was collecting signatures for a petition to have Charlottesville Vice Mayor Wes Bellamy removed from office.

The blogger punched James Justin Taylor the face after he criticized Kessler over the nature of the petition.

Monday, a judge ordered Kessler to complete 50 hours of community service within the next six months, and a suspended jail sentence of 30 days.

The blogger is also not allowed to have contact with Taylor.

"I hold no ill will towards Mr. Kessler. We worked together. I considered him a friend. I wish that he would spend as much energy building our community up rather than tearing it down," said Taylor.

Kessler is due back in Charlottesville General District Court in June for a misdemeanor charge he filled against a woman accused of stealing his phone during a protest in Lee Park back in February.