Neo-Nazis Peddling False Conspiracy That Alleged #Charlottesville Killer James Fields Is a ‘Prisoner of War’

The man accused of murdering antiracist activist Heather Heyer in Charlottesville, Virginia following the collapse of a white nationalist rally in August is being touted as a “prisoner of war” by neo-Nazis. It is part of an ongoing, false conspiracy that the suspect, 20-year-old white supremacist James Fields, has somehow been framed by the state to make a public example out of their movement. “The Jews will use their guns to try to stop us, but also their pigs and courts to try to break our spirits,” Matthew Heimbach, the leader of Traditionalist Worker Party (TWP), a neo-Nazi group, claimed this week in a blog post that depicts Fields and other white men as political prisoners of what he believes is a Jewish-controlled state. “It is our God given duty and responsibility to not only memorialize the dead, but to stand arm-in-arm with our Prisoners of War throughout their entire sentence.” Conspiracy theories about Fields and the activist Heyer erupted quickly after the melee at the doomed Unite the Right rally on August 12. White supremacists first posited a false explanation about how the 32-year-old Heyer died, arguing that she had a heart attack that was somehow unrelated to Fields’s Dodge Charger allegedly plowing into her and a crowd of peaceful demonstrators. When the Central District Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Richmond, Virginia declared to Newsweek in October that Heyer died of “blunt force trauma to the torso,” conspiracy peddlers willfully ignored the disclosure, insisting that the news was deliberately faked by what they imagined to be a Jewish-controlled state apparatus. When prosecutors in December elevated the charge against Fields to first-degree murder from second-degree, the fabulists ramped up their conspiracy theory that the state was coming down on their ally to make a point.
“They are attempting to crucify him based solely on his political beliefs,” Andrew Anglin, the anti-Semitic propagandist editor of Daily Stormer, who openly advocates physically abusing women and girls, wrote about the escalation against Fields. “Here’s the deal: James Fields did nothing wrong.” Josh Bowers, a professor of law at the University of Virginia who is a former defense attorney, told Newsweek that Fields’s political affiliations were unlikely to have played a role in the prosecutors’ case, because Fields is not being charged with terrorism or a hate crime, only murder. He argued that the conspiracies posited by Heimbach, Anglin and others have no basis in fact.

via newsweek: Neo-Nazis Peddling False Conspiracy That Alleged Charlottesville Killer James Fields Is a ‘Prisoner of War’

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