Jurors on Tuesday found the main organizers of the deadly right-wing rally in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017 liable under state law for injuries to counterprotesters, awarding more than $25 million in damages. But the jury deadlocked on two federal conspiracy charges.
The verdict in the civil trial, though mixed, was a rebuke for the defendants — a mix of white nationalists, neo-Nazis and white supremacists. They were found under Virginia law to have engaged in a conspiracy in the lead-up to the rally, which began as protest over the removal of a Confederate statue and resulted in a car attack that killed one counterprotester, 32-year-old Heather Heyer.
The case in U.S. District Court in Charlottesville was brought by nine plaintiffs, four men and five women, including four people injured in the car attack. In addition to their physical injuries from the crash, including three concussions and a skull fracture, the plaintiffs testified that they suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, including insomnia, the inability to concentrate, flashbacks and panic attacks.
All were seeking compensatory and unspecified punitive damages, including payment for medical costs as well as $3 million to $10 million for pain and suffering depending on the degree of their injuries. [Continue reading…]