Cops: Charlottesville Suspect Threatened Disabled Mother

911 calls reveal troubling family past
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2017 4:58 AM CDT
Updated Aug 15, 2017 6:34 AM CDT
James Alex Fields Jr., top right with glasses, poses for a picture with his former classmates and high school teacher Derek Weimer, center, in Weimer's classroom at Randall Cooper High School in Union,...   (Derek Weimer via AP)
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(Newser) – The man accused of driving his car into counter-protesters in Charlottesville on Saturday, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer, threatened his disabled mother on more than one occasion, according to police records seen by USA Today. Records show that police were called to the Kentucky home 20-year-old James Alex Fields Jr. shared with his 49-year-old mother, Samantha Bloom, nine times between November 2010 and February 2013. On one occasion, dispatchers said the mother was in a wheelchair and was very frightened by her son's threatening behavior. In a 2010 call, the mother said her son had smacked her in the head and put his hands over her mouth after she asked him to stop playing video games.

She was "not assaulted tonight but he is being very threatening toward her," an incident report from 2011 reads. "The mother is in a wheelchair and doesn't feel in control of the situation and is scared." Records state that on other occasions, Fields brandished a 12-inch knife and spat in his mother's face. Bloom has told reporters that Fields moved out after they moved from Florence, Ky., to Maumee, Ohio, but he left his cat with her before he went to Virginia. In other developments:

  • The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that there were troubling events in Fields' family going back to before he was born. In 1996, five months before he was born, his father died in a car crash. The driver of the vehicle he was in was charged with murder after leaving the scene to go back to a bar. In 1984, when mother Samantha Bloom was 16, her father killed her mother and then himself.
  • Alt-right leader Richard Spencer refused to condemn Fields' actions Monday, the Washington Post reports. "This man could have lost control because he felt in danger and slammed on the accelerator and unintentionally killed someone," he said. Spencer, who said his group will return to Charlottesville, slammed President Trump's condemnation of white supremacists as "kumbaya nonsense."
  • A Charlottesville judge denied Fields bond Monday on charges including second-degree murder. The judge named local attorney Charles Weber to represent Fields after the court was told that the suspect made $650 every two weeks for security company Securitas and couldn't afford a lawyer, CNN reports. Securitas says Fields has been fired.
  • A former classmate tells the AP that on a school trip to Europe in 2015, he clashed with Fields after Fields said he hated the French and was only on the trip to visit the German "Fatherland." "He just really laid on about the French being lower than us and inferior to us," says Keegan McGrath. A former teacher says Fields was infatuated with the Nazis.
  • Heyer will be remembered at a service in Charlottesville on Wednesday morning. Her obituary describes her as an "outspoken, outgoing, determined, and passionate individual." "I just want the world to know what an amazing person she was, honestly," longtime friend Lauren Moon tells the Daily Progress. "She died standing up for what she believed in."
(Read more James Fields stories.)

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