City Commonwealth’s Attorney Dave Chapman that he filed a motion to the Charlottesville General District Court on behalf of DeAndre Harris to downgrade Harris’s charges from felony unlawful wounding to misdemeanor assault and battery following a violent encounter at the Aug. 12 ‘Unite the Right’ rally.
Harris was charged with felony unlawful wounding after a fight that occurred during the rally near the Market Street Parking Garage. A viral video depicts Harris being beaten by several people in the garage. He suffered severe injuries as a result of the fight, including a concussion, cranial lacerations and fractures.
The men accused of attacking Harris — Alex Michael Ramos, Daniel Patrick Borden and Jacob Scott Goodwin — have and will appear in court for a hearing Thursday.
A warrant was issued for Harris’s arrest Harold Ray Crews claimed he was attacked and went to the magistrate Oct. 9 to file charges against Harris. Crews is the North Carolina chairman of neo-Confederate group League of the South, a southern white nationalist group dedicated to supporting the “survival and well-being of the Southern people.”
Police issued a warrant for Harris’s arrest, citing evidence provided by Crews and a police report. Harris shortly after and was released on unsecured bond.
Harris’s attorney, S. Lee Merritt, said Harris’ charges were “the result of a successful campaign by the neo-Confederate hate group, League of the South, to manipulate the Charlottesville judiciary and further victimize Mr. Harris” in an October press release.
Merritt also said Harris in no way caused the injury to Crews.
According to the release, “Crews was injured in a completely separate subsequent incident not involving Mr. Harris whatsoever. The succeeding incident was also recorded and appears to involve a clash between at least four white males. In the video you can clearly see Crews struck in the head by an object wielded by an unidentified white male causing him to fall and strike the pavement.”
Harris’ hearing has been rescheduled for Jan. 10.