Groups criticize 'militaristic' police response at protest
Jul. 18, 2017
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia and other groups are asking Gov. Terry McAuliffe to investigate police's response when protesters gathered in Charlottesville to condemn a Ku Klux Klan rally.
The ACLU, Legal Aid Justice Center, Rutherford Institute and National Lawyers Guild Central Virginia Chapter sent a letter to McAuliffe this week criticizing what they called the "outsized and militaristic" police presence to the July 8 protest.
About 1,000 protesters showed up near the Charlottesville park where a small group of Klansman planned a rally.
In the letter, the groups questioned the appropriateness of police's use of tear gas and riot gear, among other things. They say the "aggressive display" didn't help deescalate tensions between protesters and Klansman.
The groups sent a similar letter to Charlottesville officials.