Charlottesville Commonwealth's Attorney Discusses Potential for Charges from Rally

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Dave Chapman, Charlottesville's commonwealth's attorney Dave Chapman, Charlottesville's commonwealth's attorney

Charlottesville Commonwealth's Attorney Dave Chapman is providing the city manager and police details on possible charges from Saturday's torch-lit rally in Emancipation Park.

He says, at this point, he doesn't see any charges coming out of Saturday's white nationalist rally. 

This all centers around the state's laws regarding use of fire to cause intimidation.

In the memo, Chapman explains it’s not enough for people to feel a "general threat" from the extreme message expressed by torch-bearing demonstrators.

He cites three examples where charges may be on firm ground. 

Those include if torch-bearers surround a group of people in a public place, if those demonstrators use their torches in a menacing way, or if they leave a public place to proceed to a nearby synagogue chanting anti-Semitic slogans.

Chapman says some of those examples might be reflected in the torch-lit rally on UVA grounds on August 11. 

He says, in part, "There must be specific circumstances that would cause people who are...present to have a legitimate and immediate fear of death or bodily harm."