The Latest: Ohio State turns down white nationalist request
CLEVELAND (AP) — The Latest on a request for white nationalist Richard Spencer to speak at Ohio State University (all times local):
Ohio State University has denied a request to rent space for an appearance by white nationalist Richard Spencer, citing risks to public safety.
An attorney representing the university says in a letter sent Friday the university consulted with law enforcement and considered Spencer’s appearance at the University of Florida earlier in the week before deciding to turn down the request. Spencer’s Florida speech drew protesters and was marked by skirmishes.
A lawyer on behalf of Spencer’s associates says he plans to follow through on a threat to file a lawsuit against Ohio State.
The University of Cincinnati had faced a similar threat but decided last week to allow Spencer to hold an event there.
The Ohio universities are the latest targeted for appearances by Spencer since he participated in an August white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that led to deadly violence.
A lawyer says he’ll file a lawsuit against Ohio State University because it failed to respond to a request to rent space for an appearance by white nationalist Richard Spencer.
Attorney Kyle Bristow said earlier this week he wanted an “unequivocal and unconditional assertion” from Ohio State by 5 p.m. Friday it would allow Spencer to speak.
The university said last week it couldn’t accommodate a Spencer event as requested Nov. 15 for safety reasons but would decide by the end of this week whether viable alternatives exist.
The university hasn’t returned a phone message left Friday seeking comment.
The University of Cincinnati was faced with a similar deadline but has decided to allow Spencer to hold an event there.
Spencer spoke Thursday at the University of Florida, where counter demonstrators greatly outnumbered his supporters.