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White Nationalist Who Killed Heather Heyer Sentenced

James Alex Fields gets life plus 419 years on state charges
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 15, 2019 1:07 PM CDT
This undated file photo provided by the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail shows James Alex Fields Jr. Fields.   (Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail via AP, File)

(Newser) – A man convicted of federal hate crime charges for deliberately slamming his car into a crowd of anti-racism protesters during a white nationalist rally in Virginia has been sentenced to life in prison on state charges, the AP reports. James Alex Fields Jr., 22, was sentenced Monday to life plus 419 years for killing one person and injuring dozens during the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville on Aug. 12, 2017. Judge Richard Moore formally imposed the sentence recommended by a Virginia jury that convicted Fields in December. Fields, of Maumee, Ohio, was sentenced last month to life in prison on 29 federal hate crime charges, making Monday's sentencing largely symbolic.

"Mr. Fields, you had choices. We all have choices," Moore said. "You made the wrong ones and you caused great harm. ... You caused harm around the globe when people saw what you did." The car attack happened during a rally of hundreds of white nationalists who had gathered in Charlottesville to protest the planned removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. The event also drew counterprotesters, including Heather Heyer, who was killed. (Before last month's federal sentencing, Fields had asked the judge for mercy.)

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