Speed Reads

charlottesville aftermath

White nationalist leader Christopher Cantwell turns himself in for Charlottesville-related charges

On Wednesday afternoon, one of the leaders of the white supremacist marches in Charlottesville, Christopher Cantwell, turned himself in to police in Lynchburg, Virginia, and he's being held in the local jail pending transfer to Charlottesville, where he's wanted on two felony counts of illegal use of tear gas and one count of malicious bodily injury with a "caustic substance." Cantwell, 36, was featured prominently in a widely viewed Vice News documentary about the Charlottesville melee — among other things, he says he thinks the murder of anti-racism protester Heather Heyer was justified and backs a white "ethno-state" — and he made a tearful video last week fretting about this possible arrest.

Cantwell said he thought he might face charges due to a photo of him pepper-spraying a man directly in the eyes, but justified that action in interviews, saying he was defending himself. The Vice News documentary has been viewed more than 44 million times.